Moscow: Unnamed Russian sources have been quoted as saying that Russia would not back recent US attempts to place curbs on the transfer of sensitive nuclear technologies to India. The comments have been made even as Indian president Pratibha Patil concludes what may be construed as a very successful visit to strategically important Russia.
''Russia is guided by the nuclear cooperation pact it signed with India last year, which does not contain any restrictions on the transfer of technology or reprocessing of spent fuel,'' the unnamed official has been quoted as saying in response to a query if Russia would support US efforts to ban the sale of enrichment and reprocessing equipment (ENR) to India.
It may be recalled that the US tried, but failed, to get ENR transfers exempted from the nuclear export waiver that international nuclear watchdogs, the NSG and the IAEA, granted India last year. However, at the G8 summit at L'Aquila in Italy in July this year, Americans persuaded their partner nations to refrain from supplying ENR technologies to countries that had not signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
Russian officials have now stressed that Moscow would not be tied down by the G8 ban on ENR transfers in relation to India.
''Our inter-governmental accord with India providing for full nuclear cooperation was signed in line with last year's decisions by the Nuclear Suppliers Group and the International Atomic Energy Commission to lift all restrictions on nuclear trade with India. There is no way this accord can be reversed.''
Officials have also pointed out massive Russian assistance to India in building its first nuclear submarine as proof of their country's commitment to full-fledged cooperation in nuclear technologies.