India has right to conduct nuke tests: Pranab Mukherjee

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Coimbatore, Sept 15 : External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee has said the country has the right to conduct nuclear tests.

"We have explained it numbers of times that nothing in the text of the documents, which we have referred to, prohibits tests. We are bound by the voluntary moratorium, which we have declared in 1998. Till today, we are pursuing that policy. Our position has been explained umpteen numbers of times on the floor of the house and outside," Mukherjee told reporters on the sidelines of a function here last evening to mark the inauguration of a passport office.

The 45 nation NSG recently granted India an unconditional waiver to activate its nuclear commercial relations with the rest of the world. The NSG approval ends 34 years of isolation enforced upon India following the 1974 Pokhran nuclear tests.

On terrorism, Mukherjee said that terrorism has blown up from a localized phenomenon to a well-oiled synchronized crime of trans-national proportions.

"It's very unfortunate and it proves once again that India is one of the worst victims of terrorism. There should be zero tolerance for terrorism. It has become the biggest threat to international peace and tranquility. It is no longer a domestic matter of any individual country. Therefore, the international communities will have to assert and find out a consulted mechanism through which this menace can be curtailed," said Mukherjee.

The bombings in New Delhi came after serial blasts in Jaipur, Bangalore and Ahmedabad, which claimed more than hundred, lives and injured many more.

The Indian Mujahideen, which has claimed several major attacks in recent months, sent e-mail to television stations saying it was responsible for the blasts.

ANI

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