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PM meets Sonia, discusses revised NSG draft
August 30, 2008 14:07 IST
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] on Friday held deliberations with Congress president Sonia Gandhi [Images] and some other senior colleagues over the nuclear issue ahead of the Nuclear Suppliers' Group meeting in Vienna [Images].
The meeting, also attended by External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee and Ahmed Patel, political secretary to the Congress president, is understood to have assessed the revised draft prepared by the United States for consideration of the Nuclear Suppliers Group at its meeting on September 4-5.
The meeting is understood to have deliberated upon the situation in view of the original NSG draft waiver being amended because of concerns expressed by various countries.
The Congress leadership is believed to have weighed options available if things do not work out as desired at the upcoming meeting of the NSG.
Singh earlier held similar consultations with Mukherjee, National Security Adviser M K Narayanan and Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Anil Kakodkar on the issue amid the hope that the 45-nation grouping will give a clean and unconditional waiver.
Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon, who is in the US and in touch with the American officials there, is also in constant contact with Mukherjee and Kakodkar over the issue.
Menon will be traveling to Vienna for the NSG meeting directly from the US.
The NSG failed to arrive at a final decision on the proposed India waiver at the August 21-22 meet after several countries raised non-proliferation issues and proposed over 50 amendments to the draft before it could be considered.
In the revised draft of the waiver, New Delhi [Images] is expecting minimal changes and hopes that it will have a language and 'semantics which can be sold' to the people of the country without any problems, sources said.
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