EU doubtful of free and fair elections in Pak under emergency rule

November 26th, 2007 - 10:41 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, Nov 26 (ANI): The European Union Ambassador in India Daniele Smadja today said that the EU is doubtful that the general elections in Pakistan can be held in a democratic way under emergency rule.
Speaking on the eve of the EU-India Summit, Smadja, who is also the European Commission delegation chief, said although the EU has been invited in Pakistan to observe the general election in Pakistan, the decision has been put on hold.
“We had been invited already much earlier in the year to observe the general election in Pakistan and obviously for the moment we are putting on hold this decision because it is clear that we don’t believe that election can be held in a democratic way when there is this state of emergency,” said Smadja.
The EU-India Summit is scheduled in Delhi on November 30.
On India’s civil nuclear deal with the United State, the EU ambassador in India said that the EU is keeping an eye on India’s talks with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) related to the nuke deal.
“EU as a whole do understand India’s interest in civil nuclear cooperation and its rapidly increasing energy needs. In addition, the EU is very committed to the international non-proliferation regime and in this context the EU is following it with great interest the discussion between India and the IAEA,” said Daniele Smadja.
Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Anil Kakodkar is presently holding talks with the IAEA on India-specific safeguards agreement related to the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal after the Left parties gave the green signal to the government to approach the IAEA.
However, the Left had asked the Government not to initiate any accord, but bring back the draft of the safeguards agreement to the UPA-Left Committee.
The Indo-US nuke-deal faces an informal US deadline related to securing approval of America’s Congress well before the next year presidential polls.
Three more steps are required to operationalise the deal that include, safeguard agreement with the IAEA, amendment in the 45-member Nuclear Suppliers Group’s charter and the passing of the 123-agreement by the US Congress. (ANI)

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