NEW DELHI: Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale and US Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Andrea Thompson held the ninth round of the US-India Strategic Security Dialogue in Washington on Wednesday.
“The two sides exchanged views on a wide range of global security and nonproliferation challenges and reaffirmed their commitment to work together to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems and to deny access to such weapons by terrorists and non-state actors. They committed to strengthen bilateral security and civil nuclear cooperation, including the establishment of six US nuclear power plants in India. The United States reaffirmed its strong support of India’s early membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group,” read the joint press release. China, which has been repeatedly blocking India’s entry into the NSG, also blocked the listing of Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar at the UNSC for the fourth time Wednesday.
While no details were provided about the six US nuclear plants to be set up in India, the two sides have been discussing the supply of US nuclear reactors to India for more than a decade. However, differences over liability rules, which stipulate that the operator rather than the maker of a nuclear plant must shoulder the costs of an accident has been major a stumbling block.
As the world’s third largest importer of oil, India has been scouting for alternate sources of energy for over a decade.