Russia backs India becoming member of Shanghai Cooperation Organization

20:39, December 21, 2010      

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Russia Tuesday expressed its support to India becoming a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and vowed to seek closer coordination with New Delhi over Afghanistan.

In a joint communique issued by Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and visiting Russian President Dmitry Medvedev here, both countries also supported Iran's right to peaceful development of civilian nuclear energy.

After a high-level meeting between Prime Minister Singh and President Medvedev, Russia also asked Pakistan to bring Mumbai attackers to justice.

The joint statement issued after the meeting between the two leaders called on Pakistan to act against those responsible for the carnage in Mumbai in November 2008.

The Russian president, who is on a two-day visit to India starting Tuesday, supported India's entry into non-proliferation bodies.

Russia also called for implementation of the United Nations Resolution 1267 on terror groups referring to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) ban on terrorist outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba's front organization Jamaat-ud-Dawa and its chief Hafiz Saeed.

Russia and India also agreed to intensify their discussions on Afghanistan.

Russia also reiterated its support to India's bid for a permanent seat in an expanded United Nations Security Council, while backing India's entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) , Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) and non-proliferation bodies like the Wassenar Arrangement.

The Wassenar Arrangement was established to exercise export controls for conventional arms and dual use goods and technologies.

India and Russia Tuesday also signed 30 agreements of cooperation, strengthening bilateral ties in fields of science, culture, pharmaceuticals and peaceful use of nuclear energy.

The two countries signed two framework agreements on setting up two more nuclear reactors in this country, said Indian officials.

The agreements were signed in the presence of the Indian prime minister and Russian president.

"India and Russia discussed setting up additional nuclear reactors in Kudankulam in Tamil Nadu," Indian Defense Minister A.K. Antony said after the signing of the pacts.

"Ours is a very special and strategic partnership, it will continue to develop irrespective of relations with other countries, " Singh said. Ahead of his visit, Medvedev said India and Russia had a strong bond.

"We can rightfully call it a privileged partnership," the Russian leader said in an interview with local daily the Times of India.

However, a key defense pact on the joint production of a fifth generation fighter aircraft was not announced.

The relations between the two countries have been boosted to new levels in recent years, with India becoming one of the biggest importers of Russian military hardware.

Russia-India trade reached the 7.5 billion U.S. dollar mark in the year 2009. The two countries are planning to raise the figure to 20 billion U.S. dollars by 2015.

Source: Xinhua
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