UK presses wary India for N-deal | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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UK presses wary India for N-deal

Hindustan Times | By, New Delhi
Dec 21, 2009 02:52 AM IST

The United Kingdom is pressing India to sign a civilian nuclear cooperation agreement quickly but New Delhi is holding out, seeking modifications in the agreement to cover its stand on non-proliferation. Jayanth Jacob reports.

The United Kingdom is pressing India to sign a civilian nuclear cooperation agreement quickly but New Delhi is holding out, seeking modifications in the agreement to cover its stand on non-proliferation.

The British are keen to wrap up discussions and sign the agreement during the ongoing visit of first secretary of state Peter Mandelson, the number two man in prime minister Gordon Brown’s cabinet.

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Since the India-US nuclear deal in October 2008, India has signed nuclear cooperation agreements with France, Russia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Argentina and Namibia.

In a letter to the Ministry of External Affairs, British High Commissioner Richard Stagg said Mandelson personally asked him to convey “deep disappointment” over the delay, a senior official told HT.

But India is not ready to sign yet. “We need greater clarity on the text of the agreement,” the source said.

It is learnt that New Delhi needs more clarity about parts of the agreement text dealing with India’s non-proliferation commitments in terms of making the country’s position of not subscribing to any “flawed, discriminatory” international regimes in the “less-than-four-page” agreement.

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