March 24th, 2012
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PM leaves for Seoul Nuclear Security Summit

manmohan-singhNew Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh left for a four-day visit to South Korea to attend the Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul where he is will present before 57 leaders the steps conceived by India to tackle challenges of nuclear terrorism.

“India is expanding its nuclear power programme to diversify its energy mix and enhance energy security. I will highlight the high priority we attach to nuclear security, safety and non-proliferation, and our impeccable record in this regard,” the Prime Minister told the media before leaving for South Korea.

Singh said that in order to retain public support for harnessing the benefits of nuclear energy, “we must be able to assure them of the highest levels of nuclear security and safety.” The Seoul summit will review measures required to prevent terrorists and other non- state actors from gaining access to nuclear material and technologies. They will also discuss the actions that countries have taken to strengthen Nuclear Security since the first summit held in Washington in 2010.

Mr Singh will meet South Korean President Lee Myung-bak  and several other world leaders . South Korea is India’s strategic partner and an important pillar of India’s nuclear policy. He said he is looking forward to meet the South Korean President to have a comprehensive review of bilateral relations and identify new steps for future. The Prime Minister will stress on strengthening people to people contact and coordinate matters relating to regional security and global issues.  He noted that the two countries have vibrant trade and investment relationship apart from partnership in science, technology, education and energy.

Dozens of protesters from South Korea, Japan, Taiwan and Thailand have gathered near the nuclear security summit venue hat is to focus on nuclear power, security and safety.

The Summit is expected to be attended by 45 heads of state or governments, including US President Barack Obama, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Chinese President Hu Jintao. Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani is also travelling to Seoul and reports from Islamabad said he was likely to meet Singh on the sidelines of Summit. Leaders of Australia, Japan, Indonesia, France, the UN and the EU, will also be at the Summit alongwith Deputy Prime Ministers or Foreign Ministers of 13 countries.


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