PM’s Copenhagen trip depends on final agenda

PM’s Copenhagen trip depends on final agenda

New Delhi: “Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Copenhagen depends on how much the final agenda at the United Nations summit on climate change accommodates India’s points of view," said an official familiar with the matter.

“Given India’s importance at the multilateral forum, the country is hoping to leverage the prime minister’s presence at Copenhagen," the official added.

According to a senior minister in the cabinet, Singh is likely to leave for Copenhagen to attend the summit for a day on 18 December. However, “the prime minister will not attend the meeting unless the ministerial round of discussions results in a final agreement addressing the concerns raised by us," said the official on the condition of anonymity. Singh is said to have conveyed this to US President Barack Obama during the telephonic conversation they had on Tuesday.

An official release from the Prime Minister’s Office said: “The Prime Minister told the President that India would play a constructive role in the negotiations and looked forward to a successful outcome."

“French President Nicholas Sarkozy had earlier requested the Indian prime minister to attend the meeting on 18 December. A five member parliamentary delegation will attend the summit," said Sitaram Yechury of the Communist Party of India (Marxist). Apart from Yechury, the other members of this team are Murli Manohar Joshi (Bharatiya Janata Party), Hamdullah Sayeed (Congress), Bhartuhari Mahtab (Biju Janata Dal) and M.S. Swaminathan from the Rajya Sabha.