No smooth sailing for deal: Wisner

No smooth sailing for deal: Wisner
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First Published: Fri, Sep 12 2008. 12 30 PM IST
Updated: Mon, Sep 15 2008. 06 42 PM IST
New Delhi: Lack of time could prove to be a problem for the controversial Indo-US nuclear agreement. The deal is to be ratified by the US Congress which started its session in Washington on Monday. Pointing out that it will not have the required 30 days for the legislation to be endorsed, Frank Wisner, former US Ambassador to India and a strong supporter of the deal, said, ”It would be tough to waive the 30 days requirement.”
“The unpredictable can happen,” Wisner said, even though India has already crossed the two main hurdles- clearances from the International Atomic Energy Agency and the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).
Wisner said the Pokhran II nuclear test by India led to a fundamental turning point in the ties between the two countries, which “made it imperative for the US to look at the reality”.
Answering a question on US relations with Pakistan, at a Confederation of Indian Industry meeting, Wisner said Pakistan had become a “common dilemma” for the US and India.
“The problem is Pakistan is a real hard subject. Neither of us has a solution. The solution lies inside Pakistan. There are forces pulling Pakistan apart...it increases the danger to both of us,” he said.
On what he thought was the road ahead for the two countries, Wisner said, “The US and India are going for elections soon and it is important for the new governments to underscore the importance of continuing talks….” He said the two countries must work together on building democratic institutions around the world and evolve a precise common agenda to sort out differences on issues such as WTO.
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First Published: Fri, Sep 12 2008. 12 30 PM IST