Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: Reiterating their opposition to the India-U.S. civilian nuclear cooperation agreement, the Left parties on Monday warned the UPA government, saying “they cannot support a government that can enter into such a deal with the U.S.”

Reacting to the statement made by External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee in the Lok Sabha earlier in the day, Communist Party of India (Marxist) Polit Bureau member Sitaram Yechury told a press confrerence here: “The government knows what our stand is on nuclear deal. The statement of the External Affairs Minister is not a single focus statement.”

Dwelling upon the reference made in the statement to the Hyde Act, the CPI(M) leader contended that it was a “frontal attack on the sovereignty of India.”

He disagreed with the government view that the Hyde Act was only an “enabling Act” and would not have any effect on India.

He argued that the provisions of the Act would have implications for India’s independent foreign policy and sovereignty by drawing New Delhi into a military alliance with the U.S. and also into the security strategy of the U.S. globally, especially in South Asia.

Mr. Yechury said President Bush had signed some communication stating that the conduct of the U.S. foreign policy was a presidential prerogative. “Our point is where is the hurry to sign the nuclear deal. Let us see the attitude of the new administration. We are committed to our position that we should not proceed to operationalise the deal,” he said.

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