Indo-US spat on Iran vote
Differences between India and the US, simmering under the surface over additional conditionalities imposed by the US on the July 18 civil nuclear agreement, turned into a full diplomatic spat on Wednesday.Updated: Jan 26, 2006 03:08 IST
Differences between India and the US, simmering under the surface over additional conditionalities imposed by the US on the July 18 civil nuclear agreement, turned into a full diplomatic spat on Wednesday.
External affairs ministry spokesman Navtej Sarna "categorically rejected" suggestions by US ambassador David Mulford that the deal would "die" unless India voted against Iran's nuclear programme.
"We categorically reject any attempt to link this (Iran issue) to the proposed Indo-US agreement on civil nuclear energy cooperation, which stands on its own merits," Sarna said. "The position that India will take on this issue at the IAEA will be based on India's own independent judgement," he added.
Mulford had said if India votes for Iran, "the effect on the civil nuclear initiative will be devastating". However, in a late night clarification, Mulford said his remarks during an interview to PTI "have been taken out of context".
"Devastating. I mean I think the Congress will simply stop considering the matter. I think the initiative will die in the Congress. Not because the administration would want it to, but the Congress will, you already saw in September the reaction that came from members of Congress when they thought India might not vote," Mulford was quoted as saying as per the text of his comments released by the American embassy.
First Published: Jan 26, 2006 01:56 IST