News



DATE=5/21/98
TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
NUMBER=2-232577
TITLE=INDIA MORATORIUM (L)
BYLINE=DOUGLAS BAKSHIAN
DATELINE=NEW DELHI
CONTENT=
VOICED AT: 

INTRO:  INDIA SAYS IT IS READY FOR TALKS WITH WORLD POWERS TO 
FORMALIZE A MORATORIUM ON INDIAN NUCLEAR TESTS, AND IT HOPES FOR 
DIALOGUE WITH PAKISTAN AND IMPROVED RELATIONS WITH CHINA. V-O-A 
NEW DELHI CORRESPONDENT DOUGLAS BAKSHIAN REPORTS 

TEXT:  A SENIOR AIDE TO PRIME MINISTER ATAL BEHARI VAJPAYEE SAYS 
THE PLANNED NUCLEAR TESTS ARE OVER.  BRIJESH MISHRA TOLD 
REPORTERS INDIA IS PROPOSING A MORATORIUM ON ITS TESTS AND IS 
PREPARED FOR TALKS WITH KEY PARTIES (INTERLOCUTORS) TO FORMALIZE 
THAT MORATORIUM. 

HE DID  NOT  NAME THE PARTIES.  WHEN ASKED IF THERE HAS BEEN 
COMMUNICATION WITH KEY NUCLEAR POWERS, HE SAID THERE HAS BEEN 
SOME COMMUNICATION, BUT DID  NOT  EXPLAIN. 

INDIA STUNNED THE WORLD LAST WEEK BY SETTING OFF FIVE NUCLEAR 
DEVICES, PROMPTING INTERNATIONAL CONDEMNATION.  ANALYSTS SAY MR. 
MISHRA'S STATEMENTS ARE THE LATEST MOVE TO CONTROL POLITICAL 
DAMAGE CAUSED BY THE TESTS. 

MR. MISHRA ALSO GAVE ASSURANCES ABOUT CHINA AND PAKISTAN.  HE 
SAYS NEW DELHI IS INTERESTED IN A DIALOGUE WITH ISLAMABAD.  HE 
SAYS INDIA IS WAITING FOR A RESPONSE TO PROPOSALS MADE BY FORMER 
PRIME MINISTER I-K GUJRAL TO PAKISTANI LEADER NAWAZ SHARIF AT A 
REGIONAL MEETING IN DHAKA EARLY THIS YEAR.  MR. MISHRA SAYS THERE
IS  NO  QUESTION OF WAR WITH PAKISTAN. ISLAMABAD AND NEW DELHI 
HAVE ALREADY FOUGHT THREE WARS.

TURNING TO CHINA HE SAYS INDIA WANTS THE BEST OF RELATIONS WITH 
BEIJING.  HE EXPRESSES HOPES THAT BOTH PARTIES CAN SET ASIDE 
RECENT STATEMENTS AND RESUME A DIALOGUE.  HE ADMITS THAT INDIA 
HAS SOME PROBLEMS WITH CHINA.

HE DID  NOT  ELABORATE, BUT INDIA'S DEFENSE MINISTER RECENTLY 
DECLARED CHINA AS THE PRIMARY THREAT TO INDIAN SECURITY.  CHINA, 
IN TURN, HAS CRITICIZED INDIA FOR CONDUCTING THE NUCLEAR TESTS. 
CHINA AND INDIA FOUGHT A BRIEF WAR IN 1962.  (SIGNED)

NEB/DB/TMD/MMK

21-May-98 11:14 AM EDT (1514 UTC)
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Source: Voice of America
.