Berlin to support U.S.-Indian nuke deal

Aug. 23, 2007 at 11:53 AM
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BERLIN, Aug. 23 (UPI) -- Germany is apparently willing to give up its opposition to the U.S.-Indian nuclear deal.

After talks with government officials in Berlin, Shyam Saran, special envoy of the Indian prime minister on nuclear issues, said he was "optimistic" Germany would support the U.S.-Indian cooperation deal, German news magazine Der Spiegel reported in its latest issue.

The deal allows India to import nuclear fuel and reactor technology without having to constrain its own nuclear weapons arsenal or abandon weapons tests.

Saran's trip to Berlin was part of a four-nation tour to fish for support for the controversial cooperation agreement; the tour has already brought him to Russia, continues in Brazil and ends in Argentina.

All countries are members of the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group. Without unanimous agreement from the NSG, no nuclear material can be imported and the deal won’t go through. Supporters of the deal hope that it will bring India step by step to accept international rules. Critics fear that the U.S.-Indian nuclear deal would undermine the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. India is a nuclear power but refuses to sign the NPT.

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