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Burns to hold talks with Saran on nuclear deal

Nicholas Burns will begin his three-day visit to India during which he will hold talks with Shyam Saran on the N-deal.

india Updated: Jan 17, 2006 22:15 IST

US Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns will begin on Wednesday his three-day visit to India during which he will hold talks with Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran on the nuclear deal.

Burns will arrive in Mumbai early tomorrow and will reach Delhi tomorrow night after a day-long halt in the commercial capital, diplomatic sources told.

Saran and Burns will have two-day talks from Thursday on the July 18 civilian nuclear cooperation deal signed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President George W Bush in Washington.

Racing against time in an attempt to implement the deal before the visit of US President George W Bush expected by early March, the two sides will pick up the threads of the discussions from where they left in December last.

At the last meeting between Saran and Burns in Washington, the Indian side had unveiled its plan on separation of civilian and military nuclear establishments.

New Delhi expects a response from Washington to its plan at the upcoming meeting.

Significantly, prior to the meeting, several US MPs have voiced support to the deal, indicating positive mood in the American Congress which has to endorse the agreement to facilitate lifting of sanctions against India in trade in dual-use technology.

Among these MPs is influential opposition Democratic candidate John Kerry.

First Published: Jan 17, 2006 22:15 IST