Nuclear Deal Current Affairs

Termination clause in N-deal with Japan not binding on India: Government

The Union Government has said that the “termination” clause in the recently signed historic civil nuclear deal with Japan will be not binding on India.

But the “termination” clause merely records the “views” of the Japanese side considering its “special sensitivities” as Japan is the only nation to have suffered a nuclear attack.

Besides, the Union Government has also insisted that India has made “no additional commitments” over the similar agreements signed with the US and other countries.

What is the issue?

The historic India-Japan Nuclear Cooperation Agreement (or nuclear deal) was signed on 11 November 2016. The ‘Note on Views and Understanding’ signed after the agreement effectively allow Japan to invoke an “emergency” suspension of nuclear supplies if India goes for testing a nuclear weapon and to contest any compensation claims from India in court.  This note has been included to help the Japanese Government to clear the nuclear deal in the Parliament or Diet in early 2017. In Japan, there is political opposition for making an exception for India as it is not signatory of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

What is India’s position?

India has given a voluntary moratorium on nuclear tests and has traditionally refused to link its nuclear trade with pre-conditions on testing, holding it is a matter of nuclear sovereignty. The nuclear agreement with Japan follows the same template as that of the India-US nuclear deal. However, in this case the circumstances triggering a possible termination are not sharply defined. Thus, note on views and understanding signed with Japan is simply a record by the negotiators (i.e. India and Japan) of respective views on certain issues and not binding.

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India, Namibia sign two MoUs

India and Namibia have signed two Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) during the final leg of President Pranab Mukherjee’s three-nation African visit.

These agreements were signed after a bilateral dialogue between President Mukherjee and his Namibian counterpart Hage Geingob.

The two signed MoUs include

  • MoU on Capacity building for civil servants of Namibia.
  • Mou on setting up of centre of excellence in Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

Civil Nuclear Deal

  • Later in the delegation level talks, Namibia has invited Indian companies to directly mine Uranium from the country.
  • However, it has asked India to enter into similar nuclear agreements it has reached with other countries in order to convince the member-states of the African Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty (ANWFZT) which is also known as Pelindaba treaty.

Comment

The Pelindaba treaty prohibits Namibia, fourth largest producer of uranium to implement nuclear agreement with India as it not the signatory of Nuclear Non Proliferation treaty (NPT). India and Namibia had signed an agreement on nuclear energy i.e. deal to supply Uranium for civil use in 2009.

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