”Indo-US deal should be immediately brought to vote in American Congress”

September 10th, 2008 - 7:03 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Sep 10 (ANI): The Indo-US nuclear should not be unnecessarily delayed and brought to a final vote immediately in American Congress because if this historic deal is finalised, it will contribute to strengthening global nonproliferation, said an US based Asia expert.

Lisa Curtis, Senior Research Fellow for South Asia at the Heritage Foundation said that by making New Delhi a stakeholder in a system seeking to adapt itself to the most serious proliferation threats of the 21st century, there is no good reason to delay this landmark initiative any longer.

Undue delay in moving the civil nuclear deal to a final vote in Congress would likely raise suspicions in India about overall US intentions toward the deal, she said.

The release of a confidential letter of assurances from the Bush Administration to Berman on the eve of the NSG deliberations last week provoked a firestorm of Indian allegations that Washington was seeking to constrain India s strategic options, Curtis said.

The opposition in India used the opportunity to criticize the government for kowtowing to US interests. Additionally, if the deal lapses into the next US Administration, it could take several months before it is considered in the new Congress, which is about the time India heads into its own national elections, casting more uncertainty over the final fate of the deal, she added.

Curtis said that the US has the tools it requires to both remain faithful to its Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty obligations and to bring India into the nonproliferation mainstream.

The Indo-US civil nuclear deal cleared its toughest international hurdle this past weekend when the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) developed a consensus on approving civilian nuclear transfers to India for the first time in over three decades.

The NSG decision marks a significant victory for those who welcome India s rising global economic and political influence and the contribution New Delhi will make toward improving stability and security in Asia in coming years. (ANI)

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