Obama, McCain hail NSG waiver, seek quick Congressional action

September 7th, 2008 - 8:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Sep 7 (IANS) Both US presidential candidates, Barack Obama and John McCain, have welcomed the nuclear cartel’s waiver for India and asked the Bush administration to present the India-US civil nuclear deal to the Congress quickly.Calling the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) decision “another building block in the partnership between our two countries”, Republican McCain asked the Congressional leaders to “act expeditiously to pass the US-India nuclear agreement”.

Democrat Obama “welcomed the news” about NSG Saturday reaching a consensus on an exception for India and described the news as “a positive development”. While asking the administration to submit the deal to the Congress quickly, Obama said he looked forward to reviewing what the 45-member grouping had agreed to in Vienna.

McCain took a dig at his rival for his earlier reservations about the deal, saying that while he “supported it early on and without equivocation”, Obama “supported ‘poison pill’ amendments on the Senate floor that would have had the effect of killing this important agreement”.

In a brief statement issued from Chicago, Obama said: “I welcome news that the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) has now reached a consensus to adopt an exception to its rules that would permit its members to engage in nuclear cooperation with India.

“It is a positive development,” he said adding, “I look forward to reviewing what the NSG has agreed in Vienna, and urge the administration to submit the US-India Agreement for civil nuclear cooperation to the Congress quickly.”

McCain in his statement issued from Arlington said: “I welcome today’s decision by the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group to lift the global ban on civilian nuclear trade with India.”

“This step, which is critical to implementing the US-India civilian nuclear agreement, represents another building block in the partnership between our two countries,” he noted.

“Because the agreement will further involve India in the global non-proliferation regime, strengthen the ongoing transformation of US-India relations, and reduce India’s dependence on carbon-emitting energy sources, I supported it early on and without equivocation,” McCain said.

“The same cannot be said of my opponent, who supported ‘poison pill’ amendments on the Senate floor that would have had the effect of killing this important agreement. Now that the NSG has approved it, Congressional leaders should act expeditiously to pass the US-India nuclear agreement here at home.”

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