Re-establish traditional consensus on independent foreign policy: Ambassadors Forum

October 10th, 2008 - 6:20 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Oct.10 (ANI): The newly formed Ambassadors”Forum has appealed to all to close ranks and re-establish the traditional consensus on India’’s independent foreign policy.
The forum of senior and active retired Ambassadors said that this was necessary as India is expected to shoulder increasing responsibilities in the management of multi-polar international system.
The statement was issued after the forum’’s inaugural meeting today at Observer Research Foundation which was chaired by Mr. M. K. Rasgotra, former Foreign Secretary and Chairman of the National Security Advisory Board. He said the Forum would take up issues of foreign policy, security, economy, etc. which would have a bearing on India’’s foreign policy.
The signatories to the statement included former Foreign Secretaries Mr.Rasgotra,Mr.Raghunath, Mr. Lalit Mansingh and retired Ambassadors A.N. Ram, J.Hiremath, Arjun Asrani, Arundhati Ghosh, Kuldip Sahdev and Dilip Lahiri.
The statement noted that the nuclear issue had caused “a distressing and acrimonious polarization within the Indian political system and policy establishment over the last three years”.
“Now that the agreements have been successfully concluded in India’’s best interest, it is our sincere hope that we shall all close ranks and reestablish the traditional consensus on India’’s independent foreign policy in a multipolar international system, in the management of which India is expected to shoulder increasing responsibilities,” the statement said.
The forum of senior and active retired Ambassadors said India’’s agreements on civilian nuclear cooperation with the US and France, the impending agreement with Russia, and the India-specific waiver extended by the Nuclear Suppliers Group ( NSG ) are extraordinary achievements of Indian foreign policy.
“The political leadership, Indian diplomats and scientists deserve the highest commendation for their patient and clear sighted pursuit of Indian national interests. It is particularly noteworthy that all this has been achieved without adverse effects on our independent strategic programme,” the forum noted.
The statement said, now that the agreements had cleared the way for India to resume participation in international cooperation and access to high technology, scientific exchanges and trade in the nuclear field which had come under increasing restrictions since the nuclear test of 1974, the immediate challenge will be to access nuclear fuel and enhance our capacity for power generation. (ANI)

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