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Obama sees UNSC permanent seat difficult for India

04 November, 2010

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WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama has termed the issue of Indian bid for a seat on an expanded UN Security Council as “difficult and complicated,” while expressing Washington’s desire to strengthen economic relations with the South Asian country.

On the eve of his visit to India, the US president, according to an Indian wire service, held out no assurances on key issues for New Delhi- support for India’s permanent membership of a reformed and enlarged UN Security Council and an end to curbs on export of dual-use technology.

Questioned about the possibility of his announcing lifting of curbs on export of dual-use technology items and more concrete support for India’s permanent membership of UNSC, Obama told the Press Trust of India in an interview that the two issues were “very difficult and complicated”.

“Our teams continue to work hard to reach an agreement that strengthens the international non-proliferation system while treating India in a manner that is consistent with our strategic partnership,” he was quoted by the news agency in a reference to export restrictions that cover items which have both peaceful and military usage.

Obama, without committing any categorical support for Indian bid for a permanent seat on the UNSC, said, “I do also expect to discuss India’s role as an actor on the global stage during my visit.” The US-India partnership “is based on both our shared values and our shared interests, and for these reasons, I welcome and support India’s rise as a global power”, the US president said.

India’s rise “is in the best interests of both the countries (India and the US), of the region and the world”, he said, according to the news service.

Asked about US role with regard to Pakistan making progress toward sentencing militants allegedly behind 2008 Mumbai attacks, Obama said Pakistan had a responsibility toward bringing perpetrators to justice “transparently, fully and urgently.” Obama also praised Pakistan’s ongoing anti-terror efforts and the sacrifices it has offered in the fight against militants operating along the Afghan border.

End.

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