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India to sign IAEA inspection deal soon: envoy

India is set to sign an inspection agreement with the United Nation's nuclear watchdog on Monday, India's ambassador to the agency said.

world Updated: Jan 30, 2009 01:37 IST

India is set to sign an inspection agreement with the United Nation's nuclear watchdog on Monday, India's ambassador to the agency said.

The inspection deal with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is a precondition of a United States-led agreement allowing nuclear nations to supply India with nuclear material and technology for its domestic power sector.

"We have set some time aside for this on Monday," Saurabh Kumar, India's ambassador to the Vienna-based IAEA said on Thursday, referring to the signing of the pact.

He declined to give further details on the agreement, which must be ratified by Delhi before it can come into effect.

A draft agreement in July said India would be required to make its declared civilian reactors -- 14 out of 22 -- subject to regular IAEA non-proliferation inspections.

Forty-five nations agreed in September to lift a global ban on nuclear trade with India, paving the way for the fuel and technology deal.
Washington said in September the deal would forge a strategic partnership with the world's largest democracy, help India meet rising energy demand and open up a nuclear market worth billions of dollars.

But some nations criticised the deal because India has not signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which is meant to stop the spread and production of nuclear weapons and mandate gradual disarmament, and a companion test ban pact.