Fresh round of NSG talks to resume in Vienna this afternoon(Lead:NSG)

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Vienna, Sept 6 : The 45-member Nuclear Suppliers' Group on Saturday (NSG) will resume its fresh round of talks at 2:30 p.m. to incorporate changes in the revised draft waiver after the crucial two day meeting remained inconclusive on Friday.

Reacting to External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee's statement on India's commitments towards non-proliferation, US Acting Under Secretary for Arms Control Affairs John Rood told reporters here on Friday: "That statement made substantive positive impact on the governments of the NSG that sincerely facilitated the progress that we achieved today,"

Rood said the US remained committed to reaching a consensus at the NSG for allowing nuclear commerce with India.

"It is an important matter, a serious subject that has been given a very serious discussion by our colleagues. I remain optimistic that we can achieve our objective," he added.

Suspense mounted over the fate of the revised draft which was under discussion at the nuclear club with Indian and US officials going over the changes sceptical countries like Austria and New Zealand insisted on incorporating. China too appeared to have raised some reservations on finalising the decision.

Austria gave enough indications that "more work still" needs to be done that will enable India cross a major hurdle in operationalising the Indo-US nuclear deal.

"Some work still needs to be done. A number of mirror images need to be added to the current talks and ideas in the draft. We want to have more effective and qualitatively improved security architecture," said Peter Launsky, an Austrian foreign ministry official.

Launsky said some "auxilliary measures" required to be incorporated in the crucial document.

According to diplomatic sources, the number of countries pushing for approval of the exemption has also grown. Under the 45-nation cartel's rules of consensus decision-making, however, even one country has the right to block a decision.

The US battled hard overnight to clinch the India-specific waiver for India from the NSG with diplomats moving back and forth poring over a revised draft.

Five rounds of deliberations on the second day saw diplomats and officials battle for a consensus that is needed to operationalise the Indo-US civil nuclear cooperation.

ANI

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