Advani statement on nuke deal erroneous : Congress

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New Delhi, Apr 28 (UNI) The Congress Party today rejected as "erroneous" the statement of BJP leader L K Advani that no country had agreed, by international treaty, to subject itself to a ban on nuclear testing.

AICC spokesman Abhishek Manu Singhvi told mediapersons that the United States, the United Kingdom and France had undertaken, as part of international treaty obligation, not to conduct tests.

The three countries with nuclear weaponry had signed the CTBT as part of the undertaking. However, the UK and France had even ratified the CTBT.

In a television interview, Mr Advani reiterated his party's opposition to the Indo-US Nuclear Deal saying that it could not go ahead in the present form as it barred New Delhi from further tests.

Mr Advani said no country could give in writing that it would not undertake nuclear tests in future. ''Has any country which has so much nuclear weaponry said it in writing?" he asked.

Referring to former National Security Advisor (NSA) Brajesh Mishra's statement that India should go ahead with the Indo-US Nuclear deal, failing which India would have a severe loss of face and suffer a setback to its atomic programme, Dr Singhvi said India's nuclear programme could not be better known by the Prime Minister and the NSA in any government.

"It is the NSA who knew all the security implications of international treaties. Mr Mishra had categorically stated that India should go ahead with the agreement," Dr Singhvi said.

He wondered why Mr Advani had not consulted the NSA of the BJP-led NDA rule before making his statement.

Dr Singhvi said Mr Advani had "become frequently habituated to making erroneous statements." "In the continuing tradition of innumerable bloomers in his latest book "My Country, My Life, Mr Advani has made another categorical assertion which is wrong and erroneous,"the Congress spokesman said.

UNI SH RC GC1835

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