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It's official: India, US to sign N-deal on Friday

October 08, 2008 18:51 IST
Last Updated: October 09, 2008 00:48 IST

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It's official. The India-US nuclear deal will be signed on Friday. External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee will sign the agreement with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice [Images].

"On Friday at 4 o'clock (0130 IST Saturday) the secretary (Rice) will sign with the Indian foreign minister (Pranab) Mukherjee, the India Civil Nuclear Agreement," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack told reporters.

Meanwhile, President Bush signed the legislation to enact the nuclear deal, in a ceremony at the East Room of the White House.

The signing of the HR7081, the approval legislation for the US-India civilian nuclear agreement, into law by Bush on Wednesday will be followed by formal inking of the accord by the two countries, which will be done by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Minister for External Affairs Pranab Mukherjee.

Bush, who had entered into the historic accord with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] three years ago, will sign the legislation on the nuclear deal into law at 2:25 pm local time (2355 hrs IST) at the ornate East Room of White House.

Some 200 guests were invited for the occasion, including senior officials of the Bush administration like Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Rice and Secretary of Energy Samuel Bodman. The administration has also sent invites to  lawmakers.

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