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India rejects US attempts to link N-deal with Iran vote
January 25, 2006 22:53 IST
Categorically rejecting United States attempts to link the proposed India-US agreement on civil nuclear energy cooperation with vote on Iran's nuclear issue, India today asserted that it will proceed on the basis of its own "independent judgement" and "national interests."
"We have seen the remarks attributed to the US Ambassador in India concerning a possible vote on the Iran nuclear issue at the International Atomic Energy Association. The position that India will take on this issue at the IAEA will be based on India's own independent judgement," External Affairs Ministry spokesman Navtej Sarna said in response to remarks made by American Ambassador David Mulford in an interview to PTI earlier on Wednesday.
"We categorically reject any attempt to link this to the proposed India-US agreement on civil nuclear energy cooperation, which stands on its own merits," he said.
"With regard to negotiations on the proposed agreement, India will proceed on the basis of its own national interests, as acknowledged by the US Ambassador himself," he added.
Mulford contended that if India did not vote in favour of the proposed resolution at the IAEA at the February 2 meeting against Iran's nuclear programme the fallout on the India-US nuclear deal would be "devastating" in the US Congress.He also felt that the initiative for the deal in the Congress will "die" if India chose a different course.