Pakistan seeks civil nuclear deal with atomic powers

Updated - November 28, 2021 08:48 pm IST

Published - April 13, 2010 10:06 am IST - Washington

President Barack Obama with Pakistani Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani, ahead of the Nuclear Security Summit, at Blair House in Washington on Sunday.

President Barack Obama with Pakistani Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani, ahead of the Nuclear Security Summit, at Blair House in Washington on Sunday.

Continuing with his agenda, Pakistani Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani has sought a civil nuclear deal with the U.S. and other atomic powers and asked for adoption of “non-discriminatory” criteria for access to the technology for his country.

Mr. Gilani raised the issue on Monday, during a working dinner hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama for the world leaders, that kicked off the 47—nation two—day Nuclear Security Summit here.

Pakistan has been demanding a civilian nuclear deal from the U.S. on similar lines as Washington inked with India, though it has been refused by it for now.

Coinciding with the start of the summit, Mr. Gilani issued a national statement, which reiterated its need for civil nuclear technology for his country.

“We urge all relevant forums to give Pakistan access to nuclear technology for peaceful uses, in a non-discriminatory manner, to meet its growing demand for energy,” it said.

He argued that Pakistan is fully aware of its responsibilities.

“It had put in place a robust nuclear security regime and was confident about the safety and security of its nuclear assets as well as the security of nuclear materials and facilities,” he said.

“Pakistan has more than 35 years of experience in running nuclear power plants. With trained professional manpower and a strong nuclear safety and security culture, Pakistan fully qualifies for participation in civil nuclear cooperation at the international level,” the statement added.

The national statement envisages a well defined command and control system comprising the National Command Authority, the Strategic Plans Division, and the Strategic Forces Commands, exercises strict control over all aspects of policy, procurement, operations, and, most importantly, nuclear security.

It emphasises on a strict regulatory regime covering all matters related to nuclear safety and security, including physical protection of materials and facilities, material control and accounting, transport security, prevention of illicit trafficking and border controls, as well as plans to deal with possible radiological emergencies.

Stressing on extensive export control regime, the national statement seeks international cooperation, consistent with its national policies and interests as well as international obligations.

The statement argued that Pakistan has legitimate needs for power generation to meet the growing energy demand of our expanding economy.

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