Prime Minister leaves for US, Brazil visit

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New Delhi, Apr 10 (ANI): Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh left for a week long visit of Brazil and US on Saturday morning.

During his stay Dr. Singh will attend the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, the India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) and Brazil-Russia-India-China (BRIC) Summits in Brasilia.

Dr. Singh would also hold bilateral meetings with US President Barack Obama, Brazil President Lula da Silva, President Nazarbaev of Kazakhstan, President Sarkozy of France, Prime Minister Harper of Canada, President Hu Jintao of China, President Dmitry Medvedev of Russia and other world leaders.

In a statement prior to his departure, Dr. Singh said Nuclear energy is poised to play a growing role in addressing the developmental challenges of our times.

"This will be possible only if we, as individual nations, and as a global community ensure the highest standards of security which reinforce public faith in the benefits of nuclear science," Singh said.

"India is an important stakeholder in this global endeavour," he added.

Dr. Singh expressed hope that the summit would focus on nuclear terrorism and the security of sensitive nuclear materials and technologies as these are legitimate concerns which require firm responses.

"India has a well developed indigenous nuclear energy programme, which dates back six decades. We have an impeccable record of security, safety and non-proliferation which reflects our conduct as a responsible nuclear power," he said.

Dr. Singh further said that India has been a consistent advocate of complete and universal global nuclear disarmament.

"We were among the first countries in the world to call for a world free of nuclear weapons. I am encouraged by the fact that this approach is finding greater resonance today," he said.

Singh said the IBSA process has come of age and today, it encompasses a wide range of activities which supplement the excellent bilateral relations we enjoy with each of these countries. (ANI)

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