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India won't define minimum N-deterrent: Saran
April 08, 2006 17:46 IST
India Saturday rejected the US suggestion that it define its credible minimum nuclear deterrent, asserting that it has "no responsibility" to "declare" it.
In an interview to NDTV a day after US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher made the suggestion, Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran said "what our credible minimum deterrent would be is really for India to decide".
He said India had on various occasions pointed out this to the US.
"Certainly there is no responsibility on part of India to declare what its minimum deterrent is," Saran said.
Boucher Friday had said India should "further define" its 'minimum credible deterrent' in the nuclear field, contending that it was "absolutely necessary" for decreasing tensions in Asia.
Saran, who met Boucher Friday, said the US official had not raised this issue with him.
"We have a strategic dialogue with the US where we have agreed to exchange views on our respective nuclear doctrines as well as issues like missile defence," he said.
On the Bush administration's contention that it was pushing India and Pakistan for moratorium on missile tests, he said New Delhi's position was that it would work with Washington in the conference on disarmament in Geneva on a multilateral Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty.
This has been under discussion in Geneva for several years and India has been an active participant in these negotiations, Saran said adding, "We are prepared to take part in those negotiations."
He, however, made it clear that the FMCT that India is talking about is a multilateral instrument.