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India committed to non-proliferation: Manmohan


New Delhi, April 2:

India remains committed to non-proliferation and there should be a global convention on “no-first use” of nuclear weapons, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said Wednesday.

India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh speaks during a news conference in Washington November November 25, 2009. Singh said on Wednesday that he saw no major hurdles to quickly implementing a bilateral civil agreement with the United States that would open up India's potential $150 billion market in power plants.    REUTERS/Molly Riley  (UNITED STATES POLITICS BUSINESS)“If all nuclear weapons states recognise and are prepared to declare it, we can quickly move to establishment of a global no-first-use norm. In many ways, this can open the way to gradual reductions and finally elimination through a Nuclear Weapons Convention,” the prime minister said at a conference on “A Nuclear Free World: From Conception to Reality” at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analysis (IDSA) here.

He said India is committed to nuclear non-proliferation.

“As a responsible nuclear weapon state that remains committed to non-proliferation, India supports the idea of a nuclear weapon free world,” he added.

“While strengthening nuclear security, India also maintains its objective of promoting safe and secure expansion of civil nuclear energy… Nuclear safety is something on which we can afford no compromise,” he said.

The prime minister said the only function of nuclear weapons was to deter nuclear attack.

“More and more voices are speaking out today that the sole function of nuclear weapons, while they exist, should be to deter nuclear attack,” Manmohan Singh said.

The prime minister added India is targeting an expansion of the nuclear generation capacity to “more than 62,000 MW by 2032 based on a three-stage programme”.