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US Under Secretary of State to visit New Delhi
October 19, 2005 00:02 IST
Last Updated: October 19, 2005 00:13 IST
US Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns will arrive in New Delhi on October 20 to further consolidate the new momentum in bilateral relations while reviewing with his Indian interlocutors, progress in civilian nuclear energy cooperation. During his visit, bilateral official consultations (Asian Security Dialogue) will be held on October 21 and 22. Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran will lead the Indian side.
"There will also be a meeting of the working group which has been constituted to follow up on the July 18 India-US agreement," External Affairs Ministry spokesman Navtej Sarna said on Tuesday. Saran heads the working group from Indian side. Burns will also call on External Affairs Minister K Natwar Singh and National Security Adviser M K Narayanan during his stay in New Delhi.
In Washington, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Burns would "...further our historic partnership to promote democratic values, combat terrorism, support economic growth, expand bilateral activities and commerce and achieve peace and stability in the region and beyond." Ahead of his visit, Washington said the Indo-US Nuclear Agreement is an important one based on commitments by both sides. "We did sign an important agreement and we thought it was based on a realistic assessment of things and a commitment by India to abide by certain agreements, as well," White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan said.
The landmark agreement on civil nuclear cooperation was reached in July between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Bush in Washington. It offered New Delhi comprehensive access to civilian nuclear technology in exchange for, among other things, voluntarily bringing its power reactors and other civilian nuclear facilities under safeguards.