N-deal reflects India’s emergence on global stage: Rice

October 2nd, 2008 - 8:43 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Oct 2 (IANS) US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has applauded the Congressional approval of the India-US civil nuclear deal, saying it “reflects the transformation of our relations and a recognition of India’s emergence on the global stage”.”I am pleased that Congress has endorsed this opportunity to bring the United States and India closer together,” said Rice in a statement Thursday.

“I look forward to a new strategic partnership with India that will provide global leadership in the years ahead.”

America’s top diplomat who led the Bush administration’s all-out push to get the deal done before lawmakers left town for the Nov 4 elections noted: “This would not have been possible without strong bipartisan support and close cooperation from the Congress over the past three years.”

With both the Senate and the US House of Representatives overwhelmingly endorsing the deal less than a month after the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) gave India a waiver for nuclear trade, the approval bill now awaits President George W. Bush’s signature to make it into law.

Rice herself is expected to carry the deal package to New Delhi where she and External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee would sign and seal the operationalising 123 Agreement.

“I especially appreciate the support of the leadership of both parties to expedite approval of the initiative in recent weeks,” Rice said, applauding the Congressional approval “of the US-India Agreement for Cooperation Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy (123 Agreement)”.

“The US-India 123 Agreement reflects the transformation of our relations and a recognition of India’s emergence on the global stage,” she said, adding, “The approval of the US-India 123 Agreement will also enhance our global non-proliferation efforts.”

“The agreement bolsters our partnership with the world’s largest democracy and a growing economic power, and will provide economic and job opportunities for our economy.”

“The initiative will help India’s population of more than one billion to meet its rapidly increasing energy needs in an environmentally responsible way while reducing the growth of carbon emissions,” Rice noted.

“The agreement reflects a common commitment to share both the benefits of the international system and also the burdens and responsibilities of maintaining, strengthening, and defending it,” Rice said.

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