India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Rangudu
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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby Rangudu » 04 Sep 2008 23:49

Despite the Berman leak, the fundamental proposition still holds. So long as the NSG waiver does not mention testing or mimic the Hyde Act in any other way, the equation is still as valid as of last week or any time since the 123. We knew that buying from the US was not on the cards anyway and we also knew that the key was to make sure that Hyde was not multilateralized.

I'll look to see "test" in the waiver and if it is there in any other manner than a reiteration of India's voluntary moratorium then the deal is off. If not, and if other redlines are not crossed, we are okay. And we will also see the end of NSG with that move.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby Sarma » 04 Sep 2008 23:52

N^3:

May I dare say that you are missing one crucial point. It relates to the assurances given by the Prime Minister in Lok Sabha regarding building up fuel reserves for the nuclear power plants to hedge against future fuel supply disruptions. The whole point of incorporating fuel stockpile guarantees into the 123 agreement was to prevent the recurrence of Tarapur experience.

In view of the US government's assertions in the letter, it is clear that if we test, we will be exactly in a situation identical to Tarapur, i.e. we are left with fuel waste that we cannot reprocess nor will US take it back.

The PM assured that such a situation will not occur. Now we learn it will not occur as long as we don't test. That was not Kakodkar, PM and others in the GoI have said. They have sold the nation this lie that fuel stockpiles will prevent the Tarapur situation.

Sir, you are simply ignoring this aspect and keep on talking all kinds of irrelevant things about Levis jeans, etc. Please stop cluttering however much you may think that you are making indirect points through your Levi's jeans arguments.

Sarma

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ksmahesh » 05 Sep 2008 00:01

narayanan wrote:What is happening now is the classic Panchatantra story of the farmer who brought home a goat, but all his villagers convinced him that it was a dog.


This is only one POV which is not accepted by others (including yours truly).

According to another view what is happening is classical story (and often repeated) of betrayal by a pseudo-leader eg. Shah of iran (who has captured power by un-fair-means) and is bent upon to destroy a nation. The pseudo-leader is supported by a group of selective segment of society (eg. some jurnail) and external powers (eg. British/US).

I just hope this time the pseudo-leader doesnot succeed.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby Pulikeshi » 05 Sep 2008 00:03

The Berman leak - ironically helps India but not the MMS government!

A weaker GOI with a strengthened opposition (anti-governmental forces)
actually has lesser space (give) to maneuver on the waiver.

On the other hand, it also gives a reassurance to the rest of the NSG countries,
that the U.S. is being serious about non-proliferation concerns.
6-pack countries are free to enact their own legislation as well
taking into account their national interest.

The 6-pack and others in the NSG best realize that MMS and the GOI are hanging by a thread.
Not getting the waiver now is a major setback internationally.
However, from a western point of view -
Congress losing face will mean the end of a "liberal" party in India.

Finally, it also forces the 6-pack to choose between India+US against China.

All this means, the NSG countries are forced to make a political decision.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby NRao » 05 Sep 2008 00:06

I bet it is a SD leak and NOT a Berman leak.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 05 Sep 2008 00:11

If the six pack had limted their objectives to enacting miniHydes there is no problem. They also know that. What they want is those miniHydes in the waiver.

The draft has already changed to make virtual mine-Hydes.

What they are holding out for is dejure Hydes in the waiver as it is no skin of their backs!

Again if the waiver is clean even with the virtuial Hydes, no problem as GOI has to chart a course through the mine field in stormy waters.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby kshirin » 05 Sep 2008 00:12

Prem wrote:I recomended this last week. If GOI has any sense left then this coming weekend they should advise these Joes Six pack that diplomatic relations are meant to be with real countries and not with some muncipalites or city states.


Ha ha haaaa..... very usable quote...I hope it is acted upon.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby SRoy » 05 Sep 2008 00:15

narayanan wrote:What is happening now is the classic Panchatantra story of the farmer who brought home a goat, but all his villagers convinced him that it was a dog.

The US COTUS has said many things, and the Indian Lok Sabha/Rajya Sabha have said many things.
But the US-India 123 deal is the agreement that operates between India and US.

The IAEA agreeement between India and IAEA is the agreement that operates between India and the world community.

The NSG is being asked to approve what the IAEA said.

OK, so now the anti-India gang in the US have come out with this non-news "LETTER", and the anti-government forces in India and their supporters abroad have ganged up to insist that the Government resign, at exactly the time when the government needs all the support of Indians to get a clean waiver from the NSG.

So the effect is that the anti-government forces are demanding IMMEDIATE declarations by the PM that he DISAGREES with the "letter", that India intends to conduct nuclear tests, and to do it NOW, so that the NSG Six-Pack anti_India forces can gang up and demand that the NSG draft must include conditions that turn the "intents" in the US internal letter into carved-in-stone NSG orders to the IAEA. All they have to do is to point to the Indian anti-government forces to "prove" that India is bent on breaking the intent of the civilian deal, by going ahead and doing nuclear tests.

Meanwhile, NOTHING NEW has been revealed in that letter.

IOW, the anti-government forces and the anti-India forces are very much in league in attacking India.

Therefore, the anti-govenment forces have proved that they are completely anti-India. The "Fifth Column" and the "Sixth Column", IOW.

Q.E.D.


Its the bomb versus power arguement after all. People who oppose this deal are entitled to their views as much as yours without being tagged to political affiliations ("Anti-Government") or being called Anti-Nationals (a serious charge anyway).

Testing doesn't matter to many, it never did to them pre Pokhran II either. Its a non arguement. If a sizeable section wishes MT class thermo-nuke on ICBMs they are very well entitled take that decision in democracy without being labelled this and that.

[Self edit]
Last edited by SRoy on 05 Sep 2008 00:22, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby harbans » 05 Sep 2008 00:19

A weaker GOI with a strengthened opposition (anti-governmental forces)
actually has lesser space (give) to maneuver on the waiver.


Pulikeshi Ji, very well said. This is what Narayanan Ji has a shade missed in his analysis which was brilliantly put. The ps6 can may see this not as people clamoring for testing, but that there is no scope for maneover for India and that they have to chose now China vs India+US. But i think ps6 will chose China. India has too much poverty and is a nation like NK or Iran. Equal-Equal Pakistan is still the blinkers they are arguing from. So when Narayanan Ji says they interpret the opposition as thinking..crying out for immunizing for tests..they put more conditions up. One must see how the ps6 looks at this. Put their sun glasses on..the ones that see India not as an elephant thats got no space for maneover, but citizens 90% malnourished, caste system, AIDS.. clamoring for insulation against testing and kinds..i remember and someone never apologized for putting up inflated AIDS figures up for India till corrected last year. We've not changed that impression too. India shining did'nt work. It bounced back with more of this crap.

A China with 85% below a dollar a day and 100 billion USD economy got more respect and power from pipsqueak than India with 24% below a dollar a day and a trillion USD economy..any reasons? Blinkers..ps6/ NPA glasses..look through them.
Last edited by harbans on 05 Sep 2008 00:49, edited 1 time in total.

ramana
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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 05 Sep 2008 00:28

Sroy,
:roll:
Its not often you post. But when you do you do make a statement.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby John Snow » 05 Sep 2008 00:52

The history and tradition of signing of the strategic partnership.

MOST EXPLOSIVE PEACEFUL NUCLEAR ENERGYSTRATEGIC AGREEMENT

Indian leaders are a class act. They never learn, that I say with reservation.

In 1998 Akhand Ji wrote a letter FYEO (For your eyes only) and BAR(Burn After Reading) to
Bill CLinton Ji
Saying
Dear BC Ji, The maha Bum we have tested is for Lizard that crawls up in the north...
Respectfooly
Your obidient strategic partner
S/D Akhand.


Which was kept on the table of BC but BCji was busy with something under the table ( some say pungi was being bajoed at that time) and he promptly leaked the letter to press.

Leaks are common in spin city like a dog near a fire hydrant.
In 2008 January
Our Man MMS thought that he could keep the letters of understanding secret with out leaking.. but then he MisUnder estimated Bush leaks....
The rest is history

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby shetty » 05 Sep 2008 00:56

Whatever happened to MMS promise to enact changes to Indian Laws to protect ourselves from getting rolled over? Its high time someone brings that into the forefront in lieu of the letter. If we pass the amendments to our Atomic Act (was that the correct name???), it should send a clear message to US and rest of the world, NSG or no NSG.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 05 Sep 2008 01:14

It will be another govt and not this one. If they call the Lok Sabha they may get voted out. LAst time they had to use the SP to do the dirty work. And now Mulayam Singh is worried about what he bought into. So they cant pass it on. And SP hasnt been rewarded yet.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 01:25

shetty wrote:Whatever happened to MMS promise to enact changes to Indian Laws to protect ourselves from getting rolled over? Its high time someone brings that into the forefront in lieu of the letter. If we pass the amendments to our Atomic Act (was that the correct name???), it should send a clear message to US and rest of the world, NSG or no NSG.


One Law, they shouldn't enact is about Liability Issues. Until Liability Issues are cleared, American Companies will not enter the Indian Nuclear Market as they will be trembling, that should somebody's dog fall dead near a nuclear station sold by them, the dog owner could sue them in the US Court for $1000,000,000,000,000 onlee.

Then India can say, they will put the Liability Laws in place, if they modify their Hydes onlee.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 01:35

Pulikeshi,

I completely agree with you. This letter has done a tremendous service to India. The Quality of Waiver becomes all the more important to Manmohan Singh to keep away the vultures.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 01:43

Not a bad analysis:

India hounded, gagged in revised US draft by Shoburi Ganguly: Daily Pioneer

India hounded, gagged in revised US draft


Manmohan's claim of 'corrective measures' is rubbished

The Nuclear Suppliers Group on Thursday sat down with the revised US version of the draft for an India-specific exemption by the group. Seeking further concessions from India, the document proves that India's supine submission to an intrusive global non-proliferation regime is near complete.

Despite the Manmohan Singh Government's rather misleading assertion that India retains its sovereign right to detonate a nuclear device, one text after another leading up to India's entry into the nuclear market is tying India down to a foolproof non-proliferation regime. To that end, the revised draft rubbishes two crucial claims of the UPA Government.

One, that India can take "corrective measures" if fuel supply is interrupted. Suppliers across the board and not just individual countries will turn off the fuel supply tap in the event of India testing a nuclear device, paralysing at one go all its reactors running on this supply.

The second is the Government's claim that the constant reference in various agreements and drafts that India's case could be reviewed "under certain circumstances," does not necessarily imply a nuclear test. Both the draft and the Bush Administration's letter leaked on Tuesday categorically state that these "circumstances" essentially mean a scenario where India chooses to detonate a nuclear device.

Two significant clauses have been added in the revised draft. One pertains to a rather intrusive monitoring of India's nuclear business with partner countries that would entail constant exchange of information at the NSG between all the countries bilaterally engaged with India. The second, a far more important insertion, says if these countries "consider that circumstances have arisen which require consultations, participating Governments will act in accordance with paragraph 16 of the (NSG) guidelines."

This NSG guideline ties up with the Hyde Act, which states that the US would "seek agreement among Nuclear Suppliers Group members that violations by one country of an agreement with any Nuclear Suppliers Group member should result in joint action by all members, including, as appropriate, the termination of nuclear exports." The NSG draft does not give India a trade rule exemption on this count.

Simply put, India's unilateral moratorium on testing is being made into a multilateral legality whereby if India were to test in the future, not only the US but all NSG members doing nuclear business with India will withdraw cooperation, as per paragraph 16 of the NSG guidelines. Therefore, after having invested millions of dollars on power reactors India could once again become nuclear pariah it did after 1974 and 1998.

This flies in the face of the Prime Minister's assertion that India reserves the right to take "corrective measures" in the event of interruption in fuel supply. The NSG guideline referred to in the revised draft categorically states that all suppliers "agree on an appropriate and possible action, which could include the termination of nuclear transfers to that recipient."

The guidelines also state that in the event of a violation, "particularly in the case of explosion of a nuclear device" suppliers will "determine and assess the reality and extent of the alleged violation," and take appropriate action as pointed out.

While the so-called "smaller countries" in the NSG have yet again registered their reservation on the revised draft, the fact of the matter is that the document places India unsparing under the non-proliferation and CTBT regime. The newly added clause -- that suppliers "shall notify each other of approved transfers to India," and that they are required to "exchange information, including about their own bilateral agreements with India" -- places India's nuclear programme under constant glare of the global watchdog.

N-deal at NSG: Day One

Two significant clauses added

# Suppliers "shall notify each other of approved transfers to India" and they are required to "exchange information, including about their own bilateral agreements with India"

# A far more important insertion says if these countries "consider that circumstances have arisen which require consultations, participating Governments will act in accordance with paragraph 16 of the (NSG) guidelines"

Implications

# First clause places India's nuclear programme under constant glare of the global watchdog

# Paragraph 16 of the (NSG) guidelines ties up with the Hyde Act, which states that the US would "seek agreement among Nuclear Suppliers Group members that violations by one country of an agreement with any Nuclear Suppliers Group member should result in joint action by all members, including, as appropriate, the termination of nuclear exports"

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 01:49

Since there is going to be a lot of talk on INFCIRC 254 rev.9 §16, I'm posting it below.

Consultations
16.
(a) Suppliers should maintain contact and consult through regular channels on matters
connected with the implementation of these Guidelines.

(b) Suppliers should consult, as each deems appropriate, with other governments
concerned on specific sensitive cases, to ensure that any transfer does not contribute to
risks of conflict or instability.

(c) Without prejudice to sub-paragraphs (d) to (f) below:
− In the event that one or more suppliers believe that there has been a violation of
supplier/recipient understanding resulting from these Guidelines, particularly in the
case of an explosion of a nuclear device
, or illegal termination or violation of IAEA
safeguards by a recipient, suppliers should consult promptly through diplomatic
channels in order to determine and assess the reality and extent of the alleged
violation. Suppliers are also encouraged to consult where nuclear material or
nuclear fuel cycles activity undeclared to the IAEA or a nuclear explosive activity
is revealed.
− Pending the early outcome of such consultations, suppliers will not act in a manner
that could prejudice any measure that may be adopted by other suppliers concerning
their current contacts with that recipient. Each supplier should also consider
suspending transfers of Trigger List items while consultations under 16(c) are
ongoing, pending supplier agreement on an appropriate response.
− Upon the findings of such consultations, the suppliers, bearing in mind Article XII
of the IAEA Statute, should agree on an appropriate response and possible action,
which could include the termination of nuclear transfers to that recipient.

(d) If a recipient is reported by the IAEA to be in breach of its obligation to comply with
its safeguards agreement, suppliers should consider the suspension of the transfer of
Trigger List items to that State whilst it is under investigation by the IAEA. For the
purposes of this paragraph, “breach” refers only to serious breaches of proliferation
concern;

(e) Suppliers support the suspension of transfers of Trigger List items to States that violate
their nuclear non-proliferation and safeguards obligations, recognising that the
responsibility and authority for such decisions rests with national governments or the
United Nations Security Council. In particular, this is applicable in situations where
the IAEA Board of Governors takes any of the following actions:
− finds, under Article XII.C of the Statute, that there has been non-compliance in the
recipient, or requires a recipient to take specific actions to bring itself into
compliance with its safeguards obligations;
− Decides that the Agency is not able to verify that there has been no diversion of
nuclear material required to be safeguarded, including situations where actions
taken by a recipient have made the IAEA unable to carry out its safeguards mission
in that State. An extraordinary Plenary meeting will take place within one month of the Board of
Governors’ action, at which suppliers will review the situation, compare national
policies and decide on an appropriate response.

(f) The provisions of subparagraph (e) above do not apply to transfers under paragraph 4
(b) of the Guidelines.
Last edited by RajeshA on 05 Sep 2008 02:39, edited 3 times in total.

krithivas
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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby krithivas » 05 Sep 2008 01:50

Question to BR -
1) Which NGO is opposing GoI efforts to mine NE for Uranium?
2) Do we know the composition of that mysterious NGO? Specifically - Connection to EJ's.

Thanks
R. Krithivas

ramana
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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 05 Sep 2008 01:56

Pioneer has a spate of articles on this issue and the credibility of the govt.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby nkumar » 05 Sep 2008 01:57

krithivas wrote:Question to BR -
1) Which NGO is opposing GoI efforts to mine NE for Uranium?
2) Do we know the composition of that mysterious NGO? Specifically - Connection to EJ's.

Thanks
R. Krithivas


Don't have the specific info on the NGO's but Arun Shourie in a talk mentioned that these are Christian Missionary related NGOs.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 05 Sep 2008 02:07

Once they agreed to revsing the draft the flood gates have opened. THats what ahppens when our babu ministry which enver has to deal with real life negotiates with sharks.

Deccan Chronilce, 5 Sept 2008

US plans nuclear rewrite to build NSG consensus


New Delhi/Vienna Sept. 4: The draft of the India-specific waiver is likely to undergo further changes to make the language more acceptable to the NSG and to enable a consensus. “The US has pledged to revise the draft and serious attempts are being made,” a diplomat said on the sidelines of its plenary in Vienna on Thursday. US undersecretary of state William Burns indicated the possibility of tweaking the language when he said some countries had raised “important questions that need to be addressed”.

The discussions, he said, were “constructive... and clearly aimed at reaching an early consensus.”

New Delhi emphasised it cannot go “beyond” its commitment to Parliament, and said it would walk out of the deal if not satisfied. “We cannot go beyond our commitment to Parliament, the commitment made by the Prime Minister... Whatever we have committed, it will have to achieved within that,” the external affairs minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, told All India Radio.

The Atomic Energy Commission chairman, Mr Anil Kakodkar, suggested India would walk out of the deal if it goes against the national interest. “If it is going to cause harm to our health, what (should) we do? You don’t eat something just because it is served to you,” he told NDTV. US ambassador to India David C. Mulford got into the action, calling on the national security adviser, Mr M.K. Narayanan, Thursday morning. Dr Kakodkar was present at that meeting.

Reports from Vienna suggested some NSG members voiced non-proliferation fears to seek an express commitment that cooperation would end if India conducts a test. Sceptics such as New Zealand, Austria, Switzerland and Ireland felt India could use the NSG exemption to further its military programme. They also demanded India should not get enrichment and reprocessing rights. “There are concerns about testing,” a European diplomat said.

“The reprocessing facility is not available to even some countries which signed the NPT... why should (an) exemption be made for India, which is not a NPT signatory. Such are the questions.” Another diplomat said changes were required to meet these countries’ concerns. “We want results that will benefit everybody ... a number of measures need to be added to the current package before it can be considered a net gain for the world,” he added.



NRao is right. Its the ENR that the point. They are resolved that testing is not an issue for India wont test unless there is breakout by the P-5 or others.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby John Snow » 05 Sep 2008 02:20

Total asaN%$* way doing things which even N guru would agree to, as Unkil and his chelas are openly pissing in Kuttan's cup and calling it herbal chai, ok Aah Taj Taja tea drink it up to MMS and his bunch of advisors Narayanan , Menon etc etc...

Like the famous chidambara rahasyam, when the scorpion stings after putting the finger in pullayars (Lord Ganesh in tamil) navel, everybody jumps in joy prenteding what a delightful experience it was fingering Ganesh (no pain....)

Bravo Bravo.....

where is that gentelman son, cousin of KS who said Take it or leave it (singpore amby or something)

KS was singing (even before the leak to soften the blow) NSG WILL add amendments while AK was floating ballons saying clean waiver clean waiver...

Just a bunch of jokers....

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ShauryaT » 05 Sep 2008 02:22

ramana wrote:NRao is right. Its the ENR that the point. They are resolved that testing is not an issue for India wont test unless there is breakout by the P-5 or others.
Their resolve may come in for a rude shock, with a change of symbols in India. There is no consensus within India for the above no test clause. The question in India is not, if we need to test to have NWS capabilities but should we? The ones who are inclined to say we should not, say so, not because they are not convinced that we need such capabilities but fear consequences of such an action.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 05 Sep 2008 02:27

And what will remove that fear?

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 02:33

What §16 imports is
- Violation of an Agreement
As nuclear testing will not be in the bilateral deals with Russia or France, any testing would not mean a violation of agreement. Even in the case of 123 Agreement, a nuclear testing would not be a violation of the agreement, even if US would be forced to terminate the agreement.

- Consultation only when a Supplier reports a Violation of the understanding
If India has only 'trustworthy' suppliers who do not consider it worthwhile to report such a violation, no action would be taken. So India should try to have agreements only with suppliers, who can swallow nuclear testing by India. It might not come to that, as nuclear testing will not be in the bilateral agreement as being a case of violation anyway.

- The Suppliers have to arrive at a Consensus on Consequences and Joint Actions
If USA says, there has been a violation and all nuclear supplies should stop, and Russia or France think otherwise, then of course there is no consensus, so no consequences.

- IAEA References and Consequences
Upon the findings of such consultations, the suppliers, bearing in mind Article XII
of the IAEA Statute, should agree on an appropriate response and possible action,
which could include the termination of nuclear transfers to that recipient.

Article XII of IAEA Statute: Agency Safeguards
7. In the event of non- compliance and failure by the recipient State or States to take requested corrective steps within a reasonable time, to suspend or terminate assistance and withdraw any materials and equipment made available by the Agency or a member in furtherance of the project.

It is questionable whether nuclear testing as such constitutes a violation of the IAEA Safeguards, as the safeguards are active only on imported fuel and reactors. If the testing has been done with fuel from the strategic program, where IAEA Safeguards are not operating, there would be no violation of Article XII.

As far as consequences is concerned, they are dependent on certain findings (which have to be arrived at on the basis of Consensus). Secondly there is some room between should and must with regard to responsibility of the other suppliers. Russia and France may not wish to go along with the rest of the pack, and hence no consensus either on the findings nor a necessity to follow suit with sanctions.

Conclusions: As far as I see it, nuclear testing does not mean automatically NSG Sanctions. As long as the word Testing does not appear in the Waiver, and all Suppliers are not forced to terminate their bilateral agreements with India should India conduct nuclear testing, Nuclear Testing Ban has not been multilateralized.

India needs to hold the fort.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 02:50

“Individual governments should decide” by Siddharth Varadarajan: Hindu
Vienna: A diplomat at the Nuclear Suppliers Group told The Hindu : “Members will not accept automaticity of termination of supplies at the NSG level either,” he said, referring to the proposal by Ireland, Austria and others that a provision similar to the Hyde Act in the U.S. be adopted by the group.

“We could and should hold consultations, but termination has to be a decision of individual governments,” he said.

The number three man in the State Department — Under Secretary of Political Affairs William Burns — is heading the U.S. delegation this time, a step-up from August when America sent the head of its non-proliferation bureau.

Speaking to the press during a recess, Mr. Burns said the NSG was “making steady progress in this process” and that its discussions had been “constructive and clearly aimed at reaching an early consensus.” But he also noted that “a number of representatives have raised important questions that need to be addressed,” an indication of continuing opposition within the group.

Full-scope safeguards means each and every nuclear facility in a country must be placed under the supervision of the IAEA, something India refuses to do since it has a nuclear weapons programme.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 02:57

As NSG members take ‘political’ call, differences narrow by Siddharth Varadarajan: Hindu
Vienna: When they went in for the Nuclear Suppliers Group meeting here on Thursday morning, the belief of diplomats from the states opposed to the text of the new India draft waiver was that this time around too the meeting would prove inconclusive and that India will have to make further compromises if it hopes to win approval for the proposed exemption.

But initial accounts from the first day’s discussions suggest a weakening of the hand of the six nations — Austria, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand and Switzerland — most firmly opposed to granting India a clean and unconditional waiver from the NSG’s export rules. “It certainly seems like nobody really wants to be seen as blocking the consensus this time,” one diplomat told The Hindu. According to a Reuters report quoting diplomats, Japan and Canada have detached themselves from the Group of Six and are now in favour of the emerging consensus.

“At the end of the day, I think the logic that is prevailing here is what your foreign secretary, Mr. [Shiv Shankar] Menon told us here last month, that NSG members had to take a political call because the proposal was really about what kind of relationship they wished to have with India,” a European diplomat told The Hindu. Every one of the NSG members wanted India to sign the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty and give up nuclear weapons, he said. “But we also know that is not going to happen. So what we are trying to do is to square this very difficult circle. And we are getting there.”

In the run up to Thursday’s session, the release of the U.S. State Department letter containing a strong elaboration of the Bush administration’s approach to nuclear cooperation with India handed fresh ammunition to the waiver’s critics. “I think it is fair to say we will be quoting from bits of the letter,” one diplomat told The Hindu before the meeting. “When Washington is clear about its own benchmarks for [nuclear] trade with India, why should the NSG be asked to settle for something less?” said a diplomat from another country.

Asked whether the leaked State Department letter — with its unambiguous language on the termination of both nuclear cooperation and all fuel supply assurances in the event of an Indian nuclear test — might serve to allay fears in the NSG that Washington was being too “soft” on India, one diplomat said the letter was indeed reassuring. “I think the assurances contained in the State Department’s response are very positive,” he said. “But our concern is that they apply only to the United States. What we would like is for Russia and France to be also held to the same assurances and understandings.”

The bottom line for that diplomat’s country, and others with which it is consulting, he said, is that “we have to tie [the exemption] to the moratorium — that’s the minimum.” “If that’s not there, I can’t see us making headway,” said another diplomat.

However, these arguments failed to generate the sort of critical chorus that was on display last month within the NSG plenary. Diplomats from countries broadly supportive of India’s position say they will press for adoption of the waiver the way it stands, or at best with minor changes. “Everyone knows what India cannot accept so it is pointless to try and reach a consensus that India cannot support,” said a diplomat from a former Soviet Bloc state.

“But the main battle has to be waged by your principal partner, the U.S.”

The new draft adds more explicit language on consultations, including a reference to “acting in accordance with Paragraph 16 of the NSG guidelines” if one or more members “consider that circumstances have arisen which require consultations.”

But critics within the NSG are not satisfied. “Proposing more consultations is not enough. Because of the requirement of consensus, there is every likelihood of lack of action in the event of [a test by India] happening,” said one diplomat. “So we feel the waiver should clarify that there will be disincentives for India to testing. The consequences should be clear and upfront.”
‘Compromise’ formula

The critics are also not very pleased with the ‘compromise’ formula in which their concerns will be reflected in a chairman’s statement. “There was a version of a chairman’s statement that was circulating when it was pulled at the request of the Government of India,” one diplomat said. “But from our point of view, this is not a runner. We want an unambiguous, clear waiver in one text.”

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby Sean » 05 Sep 2008 03:01

RajeshA wrote:Since there is going to be a lot of talk on INFCIRC 254 rev.9 §16, I'm posting it below.

Consultations
(c) Without prejudice to sub-paragraphs (d) to (f) below:
− In the event that one or more suppliers believe that there has been a violation of
supplier/recipient understanding resulting from these Guidelines, particularly in the
case of an explosion of a nuclear device
, or illegal termination or violation of IAEA
safeguards by a recipient, suppliers should consult promptly through diplomatic
channels in order to determine and assess the reality and extent of the alleged
violation. Suppliers are also encouraged to consult where nuclear material or
nuclear fuel cycles activity undeclared to the IAEA or a nuclear explosive activity
is revealed.
RajeshA wrote:- Consultation only when a Supplier reports a Violation of the understanding
If India has only 'trustworthy' suppliers who do not consider it worthwhile to report such a violation, no action would be taken. So India should try to have agreements only with suppliers, who can swallow nuclear testing by India. It might not come to that, as nuclear testing will not be in the bilateral agreement as being a case of violation anyway.

Seems like 16(b)(c) suggests consultations are encouraged, but not required in case of testing, if testing is not part of the bilateral agreement. Is it possible every potential NSG supplier, under pressure, requires a testing clause and does not provide ENR technology/equipment once India signs the deal?

How is US gaining commercially out of this deal? I would expect India not to buy anything from US given the Hyde act. Could US suppliers get business from the French under subcontract, thus enabling India to get around the Hyde act?

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 03:04

NSG hopeful of consensus soon by Siddharth Varadarajan: Hindu

New draft to be developed overnight to allay lingering ‘concerns’

Vienna: The Nuclear Suppliers Group ended day one of its second meeting here Thursday with diplomats saying there had been a marked narrowing of differences between member states on the American proposal to exempt India from the cartel’s requirement of full-scope safeguards as a condition for nuclear exports.

“I see no reason why, if a push is made by the big players, consensus cannot be reached by tomorrow night,” a senior diplomat from a western European country told The Hindu shortly after the special plenary session of the 45-nation group adjourned for the day. “There are issues which need working but there seems to be a good possibility of sorting these out,” he added.

According to a number of diplomats, the U.S. is expected to consult overnight with the handful of countries still holding out and then talk to the Indian side, which is also camped in Vienna, with a view to developing a new draft waiver by Friday. “The number of countries who favour this going through now is quite large, certainly more than before,” said a diplomat.

An earlier U.S. proposal was shot down at a special plenary of the NSG in Vienna on August 21 and 22, with many countries demanding the imposition of stricter conditions on India. The new draft, which was finalised by the U.S. in consultation with India on Friday night and made available to NSG members the next day, was meant to reflect those demands but several countries told The Hindu before the meeting that the changes were inadequate.

When the meeting began, Austria and Ireland raised objections to the new draft, zeroing in on the absence of any deterrent to a future Indian nuclear test.

Speaking to The Hindu earlier, a diplomat from a country which had raised strong objections before described the new draft as a “very disappointing text from the point of view of the three major issues raised last time on testing, transfer of sensitive technology and review.” The consultations formula on testing is “vague” and no attempt had been made to address the “sensitive technology” issue at all, he said, adding, “I don’t see how they expect us to accept this.”

But a diplomat from another country told this reporter that everyone in the NSG understood there could be no reference to testing in the waiver.

Indian officials were meeting with diplomats from four hold out countries - Austria, Ireland, New Zealand and Switzerland - at the time of going to press in order to see how the issue can be clinched this week itself. Indian officials say no one really favours a third meeting and that the time to settle things is now.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby putnanja » 05 Sep 2008 03:06

US should jettison consensus if NSG stops deal: Blackwill

US should jettison consensus if NSG stops deal: Blackwill
Shubhajit Roy
Posted online: Friday, September 05, 2008 at 0042 hrs Print Email

New Delhi, Septebmer 4: As the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal faced the threat of lack of consensus in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) owing to the opposition from countries — with strong nuclear non-proliferation lobbies at work — former US ambassador to India Robert D Blackwill told The Indian Express that the US should move for “abolition” of the consensus rule, if the deal does not get approved by consensus.

As per the rules, the NSG comprises 45 countries and it always decides by consensus on matters under its jurisdiction. Blackwill said: “In case the deal is blocked for lack of consensus in the NSG, the US should propose for abolition of the consensus rule, and prefer a two-thirds majority.”

The former envoy compared the present NSG rule to a “UN General Assembly with every member having the power to veto”. “I was involved in setting up of the NSG in the 1970s, when a dozen countries were members. At that point of time, nations who supplied nuclear materials were part of the NSG,” said Blackwill, who is in New Delhi to participate in a CII conference on Indo-US relations.

“Most of these NSG countries now are not nuclear suppliers. Niether they have any trade in nuclear technology nor do they have any faintest connection with India. But, in the current NSG, a country X in Europe can oppose the deal and go back to its 5 million people, even as they deprive India’s billion people of nuclear energy.”

“This is bizarre, as if someone from planet Venus comes and says that the Indo-US nuclear deal is not good for the world,” Blackwill, who is now a senior fellow with the Rand Corporation, a US-based non-profit think tank, said without naming any particular country.

He said “the nuclear suppliers are in favour of the deal”. The countries, which are holding up the consensus, are mainly Austria, Ireland and New Zealand. He, however, said if the NSG approved the nuclear deal with consensus, both the US and India should “claim victory and move on”.

Blackwill also said the letter, released by the US Congress’ Foreign Affairs Committee on Wednesday, has “no legal or policy relevance to India, except as a communication between the executive and legislative branch of the US Administration. It produces no obligations to India. This correspondence is routine.” Blackwill, however, said whatever be the results at the final NSG meeting, the relationship between India and the US would not be affected.
Last edited by putnanja on 05 Sep 2008 03:10, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby putnanja » 05 Sep 2008 03:08

Beijing says why the hurry as Vienna moves closer to a deal

Beijing says why the hurry as Vienna moves closer to a deal
Pranab Dhal Samanta
Posted online: Friday, September 05, 2008 at 0125 hrs Print Email
NSG Day One: Only six ‘sceptic countries’ hold out, two of them Norway, Netherlands climb down

Vienna, September 4: Differences in the 45-member Nuclear Suppliers Group over a historic waiver for India from its guidelines narrowed down on the first day of this crucial meeting today raising hopes of a decision by tomorrow as the US mounted increasing political pressure on countries holding out on a consensus.

The opposition was down to six countries, Ireland, Austria, New Zealand, Switzerland, Norway and Netherlands. But by late tonight, sources said, Netherlands and Norway had begun to show more “flexibility” after the US explained that India had made it clear it could not accept any more amendments. The option left was to either go ahead with the exemption or let India “walk away” after coming this far.

However, China seemed to play the spoiler arguing that there was no compulsion to push for a decision at this meeting and if there were still reservations, more time should be given to address concerns related to the “global non-proliferation architecture.” Clearly, this was not acceptable to the US because it would jeopardize the entire nuclear deal going by the tough timeline that lies ahead on Capitol Hill.

But the Chinese position added weight to the hold-out countries which agreed with Beijing. Yet, by evening, indications were that a decision was likely by tomorrow. In fact, US Under Secretary of State for Arms Control John Rood slated a meeting in the International Atomic Energy Agency tomorrow afternoon fuelling speculation that the NSG meet may conclude earlier than expected.

While there are no significant changes in the new draft before the NSG, sources said, the upfront reference to Paragraph 16 of the NSG guidelines in the exemption note is being used to good effect by US diplomats to win over the sceptics. The revised draft states that if one or more member states consider that “circumstances have arisen” for consultations, then the NSG will go according to procedures in Paragraph 16 of its guidelines.

This says that once consultations are on, supplier countries will not do anything to “prejudice” the process. In other words, they may take appropriate action which could even include suspending the transfer of Trigger List items — sensitive technology that could be used in the weapons programme — during this period. And if a violation is confirmed upon consultation, Paragraph 16 is clear that countries will terminate supplies.

Sources said this provision is similar to what is agreed in the 123 agreement, where consultations take place before termination. US diplomats have argued in the NSG that this provision is an effective response built into the exemption in case India were to detonate a device.

After the first session, delegations from the six “sceptic” countries held a meeting over lunch after US stepped up efforts to outflank them.

The relatively reduced scepticism by the end of the day was backed by calls to not prolong this decision. While the NSG started its meeting, sources said, New Delhi was burning the phone lines. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee and National Security Advisor M K Narayanan have been speaking to their counterparts in the six “holdout” countries asking them not to block a consensus.

The group held a three-hour session in the forenoon and then reconvened for an hour in the evening. “US believes firmly that the steps we are considering for India will strengthen the non-proliferation regime and will help to welcome one of the world’s largest economies and biggest democracies more fully into the global fold. I believe they are making steady progress in this process and we will continue to make progress,” said US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns who is heading the US delegation here.

It’s learnt that the US has, in the past two days, sent a “strong political message” to the six countries, asking them to consider that burdening the draft with any condition unacceptable to India will only make New Delhi walk away from the initiative which would be a “net loss” for non-proliferation.

One of the proposals made at the meeting today was that India give a public statement reaffirming its commitments made in the July 18, 2005 joint statement as a reassurance.

For the Manmohan Singh government, a consensus at the NSG could help respond to the political criticism in New Delhi over the State Department letter to the US Congress made public by chairperson of the House International Relations Committee Howard Berman. It would allow the government to argue that the nuclear deal was no longer a Indo-US affair and that other partners like Russia and France would, perhaps, matter more in the implementation of the nuclear deal.The Night Before

• Only Ireland, Austria, New Zealand and Switzerland holdout countries, getting cover fire from China

• US tells them: Any more changes, India walks away

• PM, Pranab work the phones

• One proposal: India issue a statement reiterating July 2005 agreement

• US fixes meeting with IAEA for Friday afternoon

• Revised draft says if a member complains of violation — for example, a test — NSG will call a meeting and members can put transfers on hold until decision

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby ramana » 05 Sep 2008 03:12

Sean think about it. The electric power from this deal even in best case will be 5% of Indian grid requirements. The x'mission losses or theft is 25% mostly by the same business groups supporting this deal thru kickbacks to state politicians. the deal is and never was about the electricity. Its about aligning India with NPT goals of the P-5. So if the US doesnt make money it doesnt matter. $100B is small chai-pani for a $6 Trillion economy that is the US. They want to grant SALA(Strategic Arms Limitation Agreement) status to India and the current govt is willing to take it to get out of the dog house.

What they (NSG) are saying is dont test and rock our order. If Indian econmy grows even this $100B can be pissed away if needed. So that is not a real threat. I can imagine a scenario when a rural leader comes and threatens tests evey now and then to shakes them up.

Offcourse he will be termed deceitful by the elite.
---------------

Blackwill looks like he understands.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 03:13

‘We will be guided by pact’ by Vinay Kumar: Hindu

NEW DELHI: India has categorically stated that it will be guided solely by the terms of bilateral agreement with Washington on the nuclear deal, the India-specific safeguards agreement and a clean waiver that it expects from the NSG.

An External Affairs Ministry spokesman said India’s position on nuclear testing was well known. “We have a unilateral moratorium on testing. This is reflected in the India-U.S. joint statement of July 18, 2005.”

He said that as a matter of policy India does not comment on “internal correspondence between different branches of another government.” He was referring to a letter sent by the Bush administration to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs stating that atomic trade with India will be stopped if New Delhi conducted a nuclear test.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby putnanja » 05 Sep 2008 03:15

Missing the spirit for the letter - Arundhati Ghose

Missing the spirit for the letter
Arundhati Ghose
Posted online: Friday, September 05, 2008 at 0136 hrs Print Email
The attack of the non-proliferation lobby and its unintended fallout in India

Arundhati Ghose
Related Stories

Nuclear arm-twistingNuclear soothsayers’ groupSen and Nonsense

When the Nuclear Suppliers Group met last month to consider the US proposal to waive the stringent rules that prevented nuclear trade and commerce with India, reservations were expressed and amendments proposed by many participating countries. It would appear that few actually objected to the exceptionalisation of India per se; in fact some of the major suppliers were positively in favour of the waiver.

The US, as the originator of the proposal, agreed to take into account the various concerns voiced at that meeting in a revised draft and the NSG agreed to meet again to consider a fresh draft. With a tacit approval from India, that draft is now being considered by the NSG. The non-proliferation lobby, disconcerted that the proposal was not rejected outright, mounted a last-ditch attack, using the not-inconsiderable resources at their disposal, by prevailing on the current chairman of the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs, a known opponent of the Indo-US Agreement, to release to the public what was apparently privileged information, in the form of the administration’s answers to 45 fairly technical and non-proliferation related questions.

This ill-advised action, by its very timing, a day before the NSG was scheduled to reconvene in Vienna, had clear mischievous intent and was meant to influence the doubters and fence-sitters in the NSG to propose amendments to the US draft that would certainly kill the deal, and embarrass the US delegation in the process. It seems however, to have achieved other, perhaps unwanted results — the revival of the domestic opposition in India and provoking Indian doubts of America’s bona fides. An examination of the letter and its enclosure would seem to indicate that a storm in a teacup is being interpreted as a tsunami — to quote a feverish TV channel, “a nuclear shock”.


Firstly, Indian newspapers had, several months ago, reported not only the fact of the US state department responding to a series of questions from the House committee, but also that the correspondence was being kept from the public domain since some of the language might have been found embarrassing by the Indian government. So why the surprise? On the substantive side, there does not appear to be anything new in the answers provided, whether on testing, on enrichment and reprocessing technology or on dual use items for the ‘design, construction or operation of sensitive nuclear technologies’.

To start with, in an eerie echo of a debate which has taken place in India, a question was posed by the Committee “Does the Administration believe that the nuclear cooperation agreement with India overrides the Hyde Act?” In response, the answer is that “the proposed Agreement is consistent with the legal requirements of both the Hyde Act and the Atomic Energy Act.” There is no direct response to the issue of what overrides which piece of legislation; clearly the last ‘expression of sovereignty of the US will prevail, according to their own Constitution — if the 123 Agreement is approved by the US Congress, that would obviously be the ‘last expression’; till that time, it is the Hyde Act and the Atomic Energy Act, as amended by the Hyde Act.

It is also interesting to note that the administration has repeated the assurance that the agreement is fully consistent with the “legal” requirements of the Hyde Act, not the political or other requirements.


On the issue of nuclear weapon testing: the PM has stated that just as India retains the sovereign right to test, the US retains the sovereign right to react to such action. These two sovereign rights were sought to be reconciled in the language of the 123 Agreement, by instituting a consultative process so that precipitate action is not taken. The problem area, of course is not the issue of testing, but of the continuation of fuel supply to India by the US in that event. Apart from the unlikelihood of India importing fuel from the US, the problem arises in the interpretation of the phrase “disruption of fuel supplies” and the joint convening of a group of friendly countries to “pursue such measures as would restore fuel supply to India”. The US has clearly stated, perhaps for the first time that the “fuel supply assurances are not, however, meant to insulate India against the consequences of a nuclear explosive test or a violation of non-proliferation commitments.” Still, in response to a question on this specific issue, the answer is “ceasing nuclear cooperation with India would be a serious step. The United States would not take such a serious step without careful consideration of the circumstances necessitating such action and the effects and impacts it would entail.”

The two very different points of view have been sought to be brought together in the 123 Agreement itself, though it may hold the seeds of future disagreement between the two parties. If political relations remain good, the likelihood of resolving such problems amicably increase; if political relations deteriorate, and there is no reason why they should, even smaller problems would assume major proportions.

The answers on the transfer of enrichment and reprocessing technologies are also not new; the US not only does not export such technologies, but has been trying to get the NSG, at earlier meetings, to agree to ban the export of such technologies to all ‘unentitled’ countries, so far with little success as there were objections from Canada, Brazil and South Africa. In the answers to the Congress, the US administration recognizes that India already possesses both enrichment and reprocessing facilities. Stopping export to India of these technologies would therefore be irrelevant.

Finally, on dual use items for ‘sensitive nuclear technologies’, one assumes that the reference is to possible use of dual use items for military purposes. That this would not be forthcoming has been known and has, I understand, not even been sought.

The shocked reaction of much of our electronic media and the immediate shrill cries of ‘betrayal’ and worse by the opposition parties are unlikely to be reflected in the NSG. After all, the NSG participants are aware of US laws and would not have been edified by this blatant piece of provocation. Yet, the discussions in the NSG continue; we would have to wait to see if the interests of major countries such as the US, France, the UK, Russia and even Germany prevail over those of the ideological inclinations of a few. The letter is unlikely to change the basic trends.

The writer is former ambassador of India to the United Nations in Geneva

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 03:17

“Disclosure made as per earlier plans” : PTI

Washington: The disclosure of the letter in the United States, stating that Washington will stop nuclear trade with India, if New Delhi conducts a nuclear test, was made as per earlier plans and has nothing to do with the Nuclear Suppliers Group meet that began on Thursday, a senior Congressional aide said.

“The administration made it clear back in late July when there was no discussion of a second NSG meeting – that it intended to submit the agreement for congressional consideration during September,” Communications Director to the House Foreign Affairs Committee Lynne Weil told PTI.

The 26-page letter was released by well-known opponent of the deal Howard Berman, who is the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. It contains an assertion by the Bush Administration that its assurances of nuclear supplies to India are not meant to insulate it against the consequences of a nuclear test.

“Mr. Berman decided his colleagues must receive the materials in early September so that they could be well-informed when the administration sent the agreement to Capitol Hill. :roll: The Bush Administration always knew that this material would be made public prior to Congress considering the nuclear agreement. The release of the information should come as no surprise to the administration,” she added.

“The arrangement between the committee and the State Department to keep the materials confidential was from the start tied to the schedule for congressional consideration of the U.S.-India civilian nuclear cooperation agreement.”


Howard Berman is a real bone sitting in the throat, IOW a pain in a$$.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby enqyoob » 05 Sep 2008 03:26

Oh! Thank Allah! Other than Saurav Ganguly, I can't think of any other famous Indian from Bengal who stands up and fights the good fight for India except Arundhati Ghose.

The non-proliferation lobby, disconcerted that the proposal was not rejected outright, mounted a last-ditch attack, using the not-inconsiderable resources at their disposal, by prevailing on the current chairman of the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs, a known opponent of the Indo-US Agreement, to release to the public what was apparently privileged information, in the form of the administration’s answers to 45 fairly technical and non-proliferation related questions.

This ill-advised action, by its very timing, a day before the NSG was scheduled to reconvene in Vienna, had clear mischievous intent and was meant to influence the doubters and fence-sitters in the NSG to propose amendments to the US draft that would certainly kill the deal, and embarrass the US delegation in the process. It seems however, to have achieved other, perhaps unwanted results — the revival of the domestic opposition in India and provoking Indian doubts of America’s bona fides. An examination of the letter and its enclosure would seem to indicate that a storm in a teacup is being interpreted as a tsunami — to quote a feverish TV channel, “a nuclear shock”.


The anti-Indians outside get support from the anti-Indians inside. Apparently those who oppose the government on everything in order to lend support to the anti-India cabal outside India, should not be described as "anti-government" here :roll: so we'll describe them as Teacup Tsunamists.

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 03:27

RaviBg wrote:
Beijing says why the hurry as Vienna moves closer to a deal

However, China seemed to play the spoiler arguing that there was no compulsion to push for a decision at this meeting and if there were still reservations, more time should be given to address concerns related to the “global non-proliferation architecture.” Clearly, this was not acceptable to the US because it would jeopardize the entire nuclear deal going by the tough timeline that lies ahead on Capitol Hill.

But the Chinese position added weight to the hold-out countries which agreed with Beijing. Yet, by evening, indications were that a decision was likely by tomorrow.

• Revised draft says if a member complains of violation — for example, a test — NSG will call a meeting and members can put transfers on hold until decision


So China is coming dheere dheere out from behind its mask. Let us see, what hasn't worked:

1. Karat failed in the UPA-Left Committee
2. CPI(M) failed in causing an uprising amongst the Muslims.
3. Left Front failed on the July 22nd Trust Vote in Lok Sabha.
4. China failed to get traction for a criteria-based IAEA Safeguards Agreement.
5. Pakistan failed to show up at the IAEA to force a vote. Down Boy, Down!
6. China failed to drum up enough support through the NPA Round Letter to NSG before August 21-22 Meeting.
7. China will also fail with the Pipsqueak.
8. So now China is making noises directly.

Hmmmm....

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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby awagaman » 05 Sep 2008 03:31

From SV blog:-http://svaradarajan.blogspot.com/2008/09/bush-berman-bombshell-and-ghosts-of.html

The Bush-Berman bombshell and the ghosts of Tarapur

The State Department letter is proof that America has been negotiating in bad faith.
Even if the NSG grants India a clean and unconditional waiver, the country would be foolish to buy any U.S. nuclear supplies. A preview of an op-ed by me for tomorrow's Hindu...

The Bush-Berman bombshell and the ghosts of Tarapur

Siddharth Varadarajan

Whatever the American strategic or political objectives might have been, the Indian origins of the Indo-U.S. nuclear agreement lay in an atomic power station named Tarapur. If that United States-supplied reactor marked the origin of India’s quest for a commercially viable civilian nuclear programme, the subsequent denials of low-enriched uranium and reprocessing consent for the accumulated spent fuel from TAPS are also an essential part of the foundational narrative of our nuclear industry. Following the Pokhran-I detonation in 1974, the U.S. unilaterally abrogated its nuclear agreement with India, leading to the denial of fuel for the reactor. Thanks to France and Russia, last-minute supply solutions to the Tarapur crisis were always found but it was out of a burning desire to get out of this hand-to-mouth existence and end the fuel uncertainty once and for all that the United Progressive Alliance government of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh first began engaging Washington in discussions about a nuclear agreement.

The text which emerged on July 18, 2005, eventually went beyond merely envisaging LEU for Tarapur. On that day, the U.S. committed itself to lifting the global ban on fresh fuel and nuclear equipment sales to India. As the deal moved through each subsequent stage, the one challenge which Indian negotiators always sought to address has been to find ways of insulating the country from a repeat of the Tarapur experience. Tarapur happened because of a nuclear detonation. Their brief was to make sure there could be no repeat. After all, if billions of dollars are to be invested in the construction of new reactors in India, the country has to insulate itself from the possibility of fuel supply disruptions no matter what the cause. From the March 2006 separation plan onwards, therefore, fuel supply assurances have been a pivotal part of the agreement. Regardless of what the American side believed or wished, neither the separation plan nor the 123 Agreement of July 2007 qualified the circumstances under which these multiple layers of fuel supply assurances would kick in.

These layers of protection consist, inter alia, of U.S. support for an Indian effort to develop a strategic reserve of nuclear fuel to guard against any disruption of supply over the lifetime of India’s reactors, and action by the U.S. in tandem with Russia, France and Britain to “pursue such measures as would restore fuel supply to India” in the event of disruption. The last layer of protection explicitly provided for by the agreement is India’s right to take “corrective measures” when all else fails.

These measures were agreed to by U.S. President George W. Bush in a joint statement with Prime Minister Singh on March 2, 2006. And they formed an essential building block of what was to follow, including the 123 agreement and the safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency with its provisions for “perpetuity”.

It is significant that paragraph 5.6 of the 123 agreement – which repeats verbatim the March 2006 fuel supply assurances -- provides no scope for derogation from these legally binding commitments by either party, even after termination of the agreement. Just as Washington expects India’s commitment to safeguard U.S. origin or obligated equipment and fuel to outlive termination of the agreement, the U.S. commitment on fuel supply assurances is linked to the lifetime of the reactors and not the agreement and does not lapse upon termination for whatever reason.

Just as there is no derogation, there is no qualification either. Subsection (b) of the paragraph actually begins with the sentence: “To further guard against any disruption of fuel supplies, the United States is prepared to take the following additional steps”. Note the word ‘any’, whose meaning is unambiguous. Thus, it is clear that the agreement covers all disruptions regardless of cause. It certainly does not speak of different types of disruptions, let alone rule out disruptions caused by specific actions by India such as a nuclear detonation, a phrase which does not figure anywhere in the text of the 123.

The most shocking aspect of the Bush administration’s answers to the House Foreign Relations Committee (HFRC) questions is not its unambiguous and oft-repeated stand on termination of cooperation in the event of a test but the unilateral repudiation of the U.S. commitment to these fuel supply assurances. These answers were provided to the HFRC in January this year and deliberately kept under wraps all these months at the request of the State Department. The reason for this secrecy lies in the contents, which make it clear that the U.S. has no intention of honouring the agreement, is unilaterally pushing for changes in it and had actually negotiated the 123 text in manifest bad faith.

In its replies to the HFRC, the State Departments undermines the sanctity of the fuel supply assurances in six vital ways. First, in Question 14, it refuses to consider the assurances as contained in the March 2006 to be of a binding legal character, preferring instead to call them “important Presidential commitments” that the U.S. will uphold only to the extent they are “consistent with U.S. law”.

Secondly, in Question 15, it arbitrarily restricts the meaning of “disruption of supply”. It says the U.S. understanding of the phrase “disruption of fuel supplies" in Article 5.6 of the 123 Agreement “is meant to refer to disruptions in supply to India that may result through no fault of its own. Examples of such a disruption include (but are not limited to): a trade war resulting in the cut-off of supply; market disruptions in the global supply of fuel; and the potential failure of an American company to fulfill any fuel supply contracts it may have signed with India.”

Thirdly, it adds insult to injury by falsely asserting in the same answer: “We believe the Indian government shares our understanding of this provision”. It is surprising that this assertion has gone unchallenged by the Indian government.

Fourthly, in answer to Question 16 about the status of fuel supply assurances in the event of a nuclear test, the State Department unilaterally asserts that a nuclear detonation by India would give the U.S. the right to terminate the agreement on a year’s notice and that in case of termination, “the commitments in Article 5.6 would no longer apply”.

Fifthly, in Questions 17 and 18, the U.S. is serving notice of its intention to implement the so-called ‘non-binding’ clause of the Hyde Act (Section 103(a)(6)), which says it shall be U.S. policy to seek to prevent the transfer of nuclear material to India from other sources should American nuclear transfers be suspended or terminated. In the event of a fuel disruption following a nuclear detonation by India, therefore, the U.S. will not help arrange fuel from elsewhere but will actively work to deny access.

Sixthly and finally, although the State Department acknowledges the 123 agreement does not establish a minimum or maximum quantity of nuclear fuel to be placed in India’s strategic reserve, it warns that the parameters of the reserve “will be developed over time”. It also says it is “premature to conclude that the strategic reserve will develop in a manner inconsistent with the Hyde Act”, which specifies a reserve based only on the “reasonable operating requirements” of Indian reactors.

Taken together, it is clear that while India is seeking to establish clear rights and legally binding obligations as far as future fuel supplies are concerned, the U.S. emphasises the political contingency of the arrangement. Indeed, in its answer to Question 17, it says the fuel commitments are not legally binding but based on the U.S.-India initiative’s “political underpinnings”.

Far from slaying the ghosts of Tarapur, the spectre of fuel denial and arbitrary abrogation of commitments has already raised its ugly head. This time around, the situation is potentially far worse because India is thinking of importing billions of dollars worth of equipment and the conditions under which the U.S. can terminate the agreement are totally open-ended. In one stroke, the U.S. is seeking to slash away all the layers of fuel protection India has built and reduce it to just one: the strategic reserve. And even on that, one feels one has yet to hear the final word.

As for that other ghost of Tarapur – denial of reprocessing and the accumulation of toxic spent fuel – the State Department’s letter warns that the reprocessing consent rights contained in the 123 will not be “permanent” and can also be terminated by the U.S. It asserts that a provision to this effect will be incorporated in the yet-to-be negotiated “arrangements and procedures”. Leaving aside the fact that Article 14(9) requires both parties to define the “exceptional circumstances” under which consent rights can be suspended, and this has not yet been done, the answer is another warning that India needs to take seriously.

Was the releasing of the State Department's answers on the eve of the NSG meeting an act of unilateral disclosure by the HFRC's Howard Berman (a known critic of the India-US agreement) or a bilateral provocation by Berman and nonproliferationists in the State Department to ensure the NSG does not approve terms more favourable than what the US has accorded to India? Certainly, the State Department had known for two weeks that its letter was going to be made public on that day. But the sin lies not in the timing of the disclosure but in the contents of the letter. The answers and clarifications show there is such a huge gap between the Indian and American perception of the 123's provisions that no rational decision maker in India can afford to buy a farthing’s worth of nuclear equipment from the United States without first resolving these differences.

The only insurance still left in India's hand if the Americans push ahead with their interpretation on fuel supply assurances is to build a strategic reserve (of non-American fuel) to guard against supply disruptions caused by U.S.-led sanctions. Even if the NSG were to approve a waiver for India in a form the country finds acceptable, it is clear that the bilateral aspect of the U.S.-India nuclear agreement is more or less dead. Pouring billions of dollars into American reactors whose fuel supply may be uncertain and whose spent fuel India may find itself eventually barred from reprocessing would be folly of the highest magnitude. India does not need to conduct a nuclear test and should not do so either. But these are decisions a sovereign people must take in an atmosphere that is free from pressure and the threat of sanctions.

RajeshA
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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby RajeshA » 05 Sep 2008 03:47

awagaman wrote:From SV blog:-http://svaradarajan.blogspot.com/2008/09/bush-berman-bombshell-and-ghosts-of.html

The Bush-Berman bombshell and the ghosts of Tarapur

The only insurance still left in India's hand if the Americans push ahead with their interpretation on fuel supply assurances is to build a strategic reserve (of non-American fuel) to guard against supply disruptions caused by U.S.-led sanctions. Even if the NSG were to approve a waiver for India in a form the country finds acceptable, it is clear that the bilateral aspect of the U.S.-India nuclear agreement is more or less dead. Pouring billions of dollars into American reactors whose fuel supply may be uncertain and whose spent fuel India may find itself eventually barred from reprocessing would be folly of the highest magnitude. India does not need to conduct a nuclear test and should not do so either. But these are decisions a sovereign people must take in an atmosphere that is free from pressure and the threat of sanctions.


Ecjactly!!!

Not only that, India ought to passively ensure that first the 123 Agreement does not pass Congress in September or in the lame duck session. No Lobbying. If there is a chance, the Congress would still be enthusiastic about it, India should reopen 123 Agreement based on these differences between 123 and disclosed Letter to HFAC by Howard Berman. Kill the 123 Agreement until fuel assurances are not clarified and until Hyde is not reworked to make US Laws competitive with French and Russian provisions.

If Congress cannot say no to USA, let the next Govt in India deal with the next US Administration.

enqyoob
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Re: India nuclear news and discussion - 1 sep 2008

Postby enqyoob » 05 Sep 2008 03:49

N^3:

May I dare say that you are missing one crucial point. It relates to the assurances given by the Prime Minister in Lok Sabha regarding building up fuel reserves for the nuclear power plants to hedge against future fuel supply disruptions. The whole point of incorporating fuel stockpile guarantees into the 123 agreement was to prevent the recurrence of Tarapur experience.

In view of the US government's assertions in the letter, it is clear that if we test, we will be exactly in a situation identical to Tarapur, i.e. we are left with fuel waste that we cannot reprocess nor will US take it back.

The PM assured that such a situation will not occur. Now we learn it will not occur as long as we don't test. That was not Kakodkar, PM and others in the GoI have said. They have sold the nation this lie that fuel stockpiles will prevent the Tarapur situation.

Sir, you are simply ignoring this aspect and keep on talking all kinds of irrelevant things about Levis jeans, etc. Please stop cluttering however much you may think that you are making indirect points through your Levi's jeans arguments.

Sarma


My response to Sarmaji seems to have been lost in the electronic world when work interrupted.

1. I will brush off this cra* first:
Please stop cluttering however much you may think that you are making indirect points through your Levi's jeans arguments.
Per the rather selective sensitivities of some admins, I am supposed to not "provoke" ppl, but you are clearly approved to write such provocations. I am going to observe Unilateral Moratorium on refraining from suggesting where you can stick that, but u know what I mean...

2. The only point in your post which appears to:

The whole point of incorporating fuel stockpile guarantees into the 123 agreement was to prevent the recurrence of Tarapur experience.


So the issue in your view is how to prevent a repeat of Tarapur:

Elementary, Dr. Sarma. DON'T TEST for ten years or so. By then enough experience will have been gained of working with other countries on civilian nuclear power, and with the separation scheme, that there will be enough countries who will support a test by India IF THE CIRCUMSTANCES CALL FOR IT. In that time, enough strategic reserve can be accumulated.

Now that's not what irritates the heck out of me - it is the whole motivation behind what Arundhati Ghose kindly calls the teacup tsunami.

WHY is it necessary to pressure GOI into declaring that India will test, just 2 days or 1 day before the NSG is to meet to come up with the waiver? Would it terribly offend the Opposition to wait a week and THEN slam the government?

There is absolutely no way to explain these actions of the Opposition other than that they are motivated by petty political greed, at the expense of damaging India's long-term interests massively. This is absolutely unforgiveable.

For all those who are screaming for testing and how brave the NDA government would be, let me remind you that the NDA govt were the guys who ordered the Indian Army and Navy and Air Force to not cross the LOC in 1999 when the Pakis invaded 10 miles into India and killed several hundred of our soldiers. All to please the Americans as a "responsible" nation.

"Insaniyat". "Restraint".

And you want me to believe that these guys will explode nuclear bombs again? :rotfl:


This is what is so absolutely dismal about the performance of the BJP and its many uber-loyalists here.

And it is more than funny to see Siddarth Varadarajan, notorious paparrazzo for the Communist Chinese mouthpiece, The Hindu, being idolized as the Authoritative Source on nuclear deals. :roll: What next? The Nishaan-e-RSS for Naxal Ram?


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