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Pranab's statement allayed our fears, says Dutch Ambassador

September 11, 2008 11:53 IST

The Netherlands, which was one of the Nuclear Suppliers Group countries having reservation on grant of waiver to India, has said its fears had been addressed by the statement of External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee on New Delhi's [Images] commitments to non-proliferation goals.

"There were a number of apprehensions about granting the waiver to India. These were about nuclear testing, supply of nuclear fuel to India and about transfer of nuclear technology," The Netherlands Ambassador Bob Hiensch told PTI in New Delhi.

"I must congratulate the Indian government. The Indian foreign minister's press statement on Friday morning really addressed all our worries," he said on the sidelines of a function in New Delhi  on Wedndesday night.

As the NSG meeting was underway in Vienna [Images], Mukherjee had issued a statement form Delhi affirming India's commitment to non-proliferation goals and vowing to maintain its unilateral moratorium on testing.

Hiensch said that after Mukherjee's statement he had spoken to his prime minister and foreign minister asking them to "accept this as a political commitment of India."

 The Dutch prime minister and foreign minister spoke to some other countries asking them to do the same, Hiensch said.The Netherlands, the envoy said, had played a "constructive" role at the meeting of NSG in Vienna from September 4-6.

Noting that his country no longer has any apprehensions, Hiensch congratulated India on its track record in the non-proliferation field. "Science and technology is now becoming a two-way street," he said.

The Netherlands was among six NSG members, which had reservations to grant of waiver to India because of its strong views on non-proliferation. The country had been contending that India should not get the exemption till it signs the NPT.

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