Skip to comments.Iran: India-US nuclear deal could set a precedent for Israel
Posted on 08/01/2008 8:29:30 AM PDT by CarrotAndStick
Vienna - India's nuclear trade deal with the United States might create a precedent for Israel, an Iranian diplomat warned on Friday, as the UN nuclear watchdog prepared to approve an inspection plan for India that is part of the bilateral deal. Under its 2005 deal with the US, India is to receive nuclear supplies in return for opening its nuclear energy sector to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspections, despite the fact that - like Israel - it is a nuclear weapons country not party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
"There is serious concern that the United States has taken this step with the intention to create a precedent and pave the way for Israel to continue its clandestine weapons activities," Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran's ambassador to the United Nations in Vienna, told the IAEA Board of Governors.
The IAEA's Safeguards Agreement to inspect additional Indian facilities "raises pertinent questions about the status and the fate of (the) nonproliferation regime," he said.
Nonproliferation experts are concerned that Iran could one day build atom bombs and then ask for a similar deal as India. North Korea and Pakistan, both nuclear weapons states outside the nonproliferation treaty, have indicated they wanted to be treated in the same manner as India.
Pakistan not eligible for similar n-deal: Burns
Washington: The former Under Secretary of State of Political Affairs, Nicholas Burns, one of the architects of the Indo-U.S. nuclear deal, feels Pakistan cannot expect a similar pact, a day after its Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani demanded such a deal from the U.S.
Mr. Burns also pressed for the speedy approval of the deal ahead of the IAEA taking up the India-specific safeguards pact for approval, saying it was good for both the countries besides helping strengthen the non-proliferation regime.
Indias trust, its credibility, the fact that it has promised to create a state-of-the-art facility, monitored by the IAEA, to begin a new export control regime in place, because it has not proliferated the nuclear technology, we cant say that about Pakistan. said Mr. Burns when asked whether the U.S. would offer a nuclear deal with Pakistan on the lines of the Indo-U.S. deal during a debate on the nuclear agreement at the Brookings Institution.
After meeting U.S. President George W. Bush, Mr. Gilani demanded a nuclear deal similar to the one Washington has forged with New Delhi, assuring the nuclear proliferation network of its scientist, A. Q. Khan, was broken and would not be repeated.
There should be no preferential [treatment], there should be no discrimination. And if they want to give civilian nuclear status to India, we would also expect the same for Pakistan too, said Mr. Gilani at a gathering under the aegis of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Middle East Institute.
On the Indo-U.S. pact, Mr. Burns, who was the U.S. pointsman for the deal, said: My conviction is that this deal strengthens the non-proliferation regime... it makes India a stakeholder. I am for this agreement because it is good for both countries.... The civilian nuclear deal is a symbolic centre piece of the bilateral relations.
He also gave a Teheran link to the nuclear deal when he said a swift approval by the IAEA, NSG and the U.S. Congress would send a strong message to countries like Iran to play by the rules and for strengthening the non-proliferation regime. If you play by the rules.... there will be benefits, he reminded Tehran.
Mr. Burns, who stepped down in March and was appointed as a special envoy to U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on the deal, also stressed the U.S. has in place the right measures to protect its interests by retaining the right to terminate the agreement. He asserted the 123 Agreement is absolutely consistent with the Hyde Act. PTI
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