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Former ambassador's lessons for India, US

March 22, 2005 14:17 IST

Former United States ambassador to India, Robert Blackwill, has said the US should support India's claim for permanent membership in the United Nations Security Council.

Blackwill said US should enhance cooperation with India in civil nuclear and space technology to further cement bilateral ties.

He also said US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's visit boosted Indo-US ties.

He called for "fundamental policy changes" by both the countries.

"Gone are the days when the State Department viewed India myopically through the lens of India's long-troubled relationship with Pakistan. Washington has also stopped playing nagging nanny regarding India's nuclear weapons programme," said Blackwill.

Blackwill asked India to engage in a major way to help build a civil society in Iraq. He also said India should persuade Iran "to give up its insistence on a full fuel cycle and its pursuit of nuclear weapons".

"India should continue its efforts to normalise relations with Pakistan and should work ever more closely with the U.S. to deal with regional instability emanating from Afghanistan, Nepal and Bangladesh. It should be a much more cooperative partner with Washington in the Doha trade round.

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