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Wrap up N-deal before Bush exits: Talbott

February 25, 2008 13:35 IST

Surprised at the opposition to Indo-US nuclear deal in India, former US Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott has said it was a classic case of putting a bullet in a gift horse's forehead, as he was not sure the next US administration would offer a similar deal.

Ironically, Talbott, currently the president of the leading US think-tank Brookings Institution, has been critical of the nuclear deal, as India is yet to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

As the then number two man in the US State Department, Talbott conducted a marathon two-year dialogue with the then External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh on nuclear and other issues from 1998.

Currently on a visit to India, Talbott told television channel NDTV: 'This

is a very good deal for India and I say that as someone who has reservations about the deal.'

On the opposition to the deal in India, he said, 'This is a very good case of putting a bullet in the gift horse's forehead because if India does not implement this deal, I am not sure the next US administration will simply pick up from where the Bush administration has left.'

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