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India won't accept 'prescriptive conditionalities': Pranab

Achinta Borah | August 23, 2008 21:15 IST

As Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon headed for Washington to discuss amendments to the draft waiver being considered by the Nuclear Suppliers' Group, India on Saturday made it clear that it will not accept any 'prescriptive conditionalities' attached to the exemption.

Indo-US nuclear deal.

A day after the 45-nation NSG ended the two-day meeting in Vienna [Images] inconclusively to enable amendments to the draft as sought by some countries, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said India will see what kind of changes are proposed to be made in the text of the waiver.

No NSG decision on India waiver, next meet in Sept

"We have to see what kind of amendments come. Then only we can decide. But we cannot accept prescriptive conditionalities," Mukherjee told PTI while accompanying President Pratibha Patil [Images] on her two-day visit to West Bengal.

He was asked about the government's future course of action in the face of reservations expressed by some countries, which could lead to a re-wording of the draft waiver before it is presented again before the NSG at the next meeting, expected on September 4-5.

'Clean waiver for nuclear deal is a fantasy'

Mukherjee said he was briefed by Foreign Secretary Menon about the developments in Vienna during the NSG meeting.

His comments came as the Foreign Secretary, changing his itinerary, headed for Washington to hold discussions with the US over the amendments proposed by some NSG members on Friday.

'We can pull it off at NSG'

During the NSG meeting, some members raised non-proliferation issues and questioned why India should be given the exemption as it is not a signatory to the NPT.

Several of them wanted the draft waiver, moved by the US, to be amended to ensure a language that will satisfy the non-proliferation lobbies.

Experts ask NSG to reject India-specific exemption

Sources said differences between India and NSG countries have been narrowed down in a short span of time and New Delhi [Images] expected them to shrink further before the next meeting of the grouping.

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