US hopeful of signing end-user agreement with India soon

June 11th, 2009 - 9:54 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 11 (IANS) Upbeat about the defence ties between India and the US, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns Thursday said Washington was hopeful of soon signing a contentious end-user verification agreement relating to military hardware.
“There is an enormous scope for expanding defence relationship. I am confident we will get past that,” Burns replied when asked whether the two sides plan to sign the end-user verfiication agreement that will enable the US to inspect military hardware sold to India.

The agreement is expected to be signed during the visit of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to India next month.

A draft for a model end-use agreement for US military sales to India figured in discussions between Burns and National Security Adviser M.K. Narayanan Thursday. The issue was also discussed in Burns’ talks with Menon.

The US law demands on-site inspection (of the equipment sold) that will require Americans to enter Indian bases and forward areas, which is not acceptable to New Delhi.

Neogitations are continuing to iron out diffrences on this agreement.

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