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India to sign nuclear safeguards agreement in Vienna today

India will sign the India-specific safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna on Monday.

Written by Amrita Didyala | Ahmedabad |
February 2, 2009 2:42:33 am

Australian High Commissioner says in Ahmedabad that his country doesn’t oppose India’s access to nuclear energy

India will sign the India-specific safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna on Monday. Earlier,on August 1,2008,the IAEA’s Board of Governors had unanimously approved the agreement. The agreement will come into force after it is signed and appropriate ratification letters exchanged.

Australia,which is a member of the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group,has ruled out uranium sale to India on grounds of the latter not having signed the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT). However,the Australian High Commissioner to India,John McCarthy,who was in Ahmedabad on Sunday,said the move was “not aimed at India specifically”.

“The decision was taken due to the internal political compulsions of Australia. Our country has long held on to the policy of not supplying uranium to countries that have not signed the NPT. Our policy is not to oppose India’s access to uranium or nuclear energy. In fact,Australia has been very supportive of India during the legislation and debate on the India-specific safeguards agreement with the IAEA,” McCarthy said.

The Australian high commissioner was in Ahmedabad to inaugurate the Management Education Centre on Climate Change (MEC-CC),which has been jointly setup by the Centre for Environment Education (CEE) and the Gujarat University.

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