Bush admin wants clearance to nuke pact as early as possible

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Washington, Sep 13 (UNI) The Bush Administration would like to see and was doing everything possible it could do to secure Congressional approval for the US-India nuclear agreement this year, State Department Spokesman Sean McCormack said.

Talking to newsmen yesterday, he said,'' We would like it as soon as possible. I have heard a few different dates about when this session of Congress will adjourn. And I think, if you talk to the Hill, they will talk about, you know, the end of September as being the date they are going to adjourn.'' ''We would, obviously, like to move this forward as quickly as possible,'' the Spokesman said.

Asked about the Congress holding a lame-duck session to expedite the matter, Mr McCormack said, ''Questions about when Congress adjourns and is in session, are entirely for the leadership of the Congress to address.'' On 'sensitive technologies' referred to in the covering letter that President Bush had sent with the text of the agreement early this week, he said, ''The cover-letter speaks for itself. I'm not going to add anything to it.'' Regarding the nervousness among some Congressmen about fuel assurances in the 123 Agreement, Mr McCormack said, ''We have had good discussions with the Indian Government on this matter, the 123 Agreement, as well as a number of other issues, and we are going to provide quite a bit of information.'' '' We have already given the information to the Congress and there's going to be testimony during that process. I'll let that testimony and the information speak for itself,'' he said.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice also discussed the agreement during her telephonic talk yesterday with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov.

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