India Will Never Sign Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, Says Sushma http://www.news18.com/news/india/india-will-never-sign-nuclear-non-proliferation-treaty-says-sushma-1271759.html CNN-News18 July 20, 2016, New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday said that India will never sign the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
While making statement in the Lok Sabha, she said, India will continue to engage with China over its opposition to India’s entry to the elite Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).
“If someone does not agree to something once, it doesn’t mean that they will never agree to it. We are continuing our efforts in engaging with China on this issue,” the foreign minister said on India’s bid to gain entry to the NSG.
Swaraj’s statements on the NSG issue came in response to queries from Opposition members on the status of India’s bid for entry into the elite nuclear trading group.
India Nuclear Suppliers Group Membership Depends on Signing NPT http://sputniknews.com/politics/20160722/1043439110/india-npt-signing.html No country which is not a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) can become a member of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Thursday.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Wednesday, India’s Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj told the lawmakers that India will not sign the NPT.“It is worth mentioning that China does not make the rules for how to become new members of the group. The international community has forged a consensus long ago that the NPT is the cornerstone of the international non-proliferation regime. No country should or can put itself opposite to the NPT,” Lu Kang was cited as saying by The Times of India.
The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty entered into force in 1970 with the aim to prevent the spread of nuclear weaponry. Three states, namely India, Pakistan and Israel, denied to sign the treaty. North Korea withdrew from NPT in 2003.
The Nuclear Suppliers Group is a group of nuclear supplier countries whose aim is to prevent nuclear proliferation by controlling the export of materials, equipment and technology which could be used to produce nuclear weapons. As of 2016, the NSG has 48 members, including China
Spain seeks ‘urgent’ answers from London after nuclear sub collision, Yahoo News, AFP on July 22, 2016 Madrid – Spain said Thursday it had asked London for “urgent” explanations after a British nuclear submarine collided with a vessel off the coast of Gibraltar, forcing it to dock in the disputed territory.
The incident sparked environmental fears as well as concerns it could lead to yet another diplomatic row between London and Madrid, which wants Gibraltar back centuries after it was ceded to Britain in 1713.
The HMS Ambush submarine was submerged and carrying out a training exercise when it collided with an unspecified merchant vessel on Wednesday afternoon, damaging the front of its conning tower and forcing it to dock for checks in the overseas British territory on Spain’s southern tip known as “the Rock”.
“The ministry has asked the British embassy in Madrid for urgent explanations over the extent of the breakdown and all relevant information regarding the circumstances of this incident,” Spain’s foreign ministry said in a statement…….https://au.news.yahoo.com/world/a/32104778/british-nuclear-submarine-docks-in-gibraltar-after-collision/#page1
Citizens Revolt in South Korea http://space4peace.blogspot.com.au/2016/07/citizens-revolt-in-south-korea.html : BRUCE K. GAGNON 15 Jul 16 Yonhap News reports:
Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn visited the town of Seongju, which was tapped as the site for the deployment of an advanced U.S. missile defense system, on Friday, in the face of strong opposition from the residents who questioned the safety and legitimacy of the government’s decision.
The trip is seen as a move to alleviate concerns that residents may have about the health issues related to the missile system’s powerful radar and questions raised about the fairness of the government’s decision-making process.
“I would like to apologize for making the decision without prior notice,” Hwang said during his visit, adding that the government will make efforts to ease residents’ concerns over the safety.
During his visit, however, protesters threw water bottles and eggs at Hwang, reflecting their anger over the deployment.
The prime minister was blocked by resentful residents and physically barred from leaving the county for more than six hours.
There is a real revolt going on in South Korea. The US is forcing the South Korean government to deploy THAAD ‘missile offense’ launchers and the people know that it makes them a prime target. Koreans can see the provocative steps the US is taking in the region against China and they know how crazy the leadership in the US actually is. They’ve been through one war involving the US already and are not interested in another
The shine has come off the American coin and the world ain’t buy the script anymore. Sadly there is still half the population in the US that believes the official Washington line (including many ‘liberals’ who support Hillary Clinton).
The world is turning against corporate control of the planet. We are in for a rough patch ahead. The story today about a coup d’etat in Turkey indicates the CIA’s operatives in the Turkish military took down President Erdogan because in recent days he apologized to Russia for shooting down their plane and began to alter his war with Syria. My initial reaction is that US-NATO were not happy with that change of tune and decided to take him out. More on that one as things develop.
One Year After Iran Nuclear Deal, Sides Remain Compliant but Wary, Voice of America, Chris Hannas July 14, 2016 WASHINGTON— One year ago, exhausted diplomats from Iran and a group of six world powers emerged from a meeting at a luxury hotel in Vienna, Austria with what they had been seeking for nearly two years: a comprehensive agreement limiting Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for lifting harsh economic sanctions.
Today, the pact is in effect with clear results on its major components, but there are lingering suspicions on both sides that the other may take advantage and not live up to its responsibilities.
“We need to continue to work and we will continue to work and we have a specially designated ambassador whose day-to-day effort is leading a team to make sure that this deal continues to be lived up to, that we continue to be able to resolve any problems,” U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday.
President Barack Obama called the pact a success, saying, “All of Iran’s pathways to a nuclear weapon remain closed.” He said the deal, implemented in January, has pushed the time frame for Iran to develop a nuclear weapon if it violated the agreement from two or three months to “about a year.”
But U.S. opponents of the deal a year ago have not changed their view, that it would not force to Iran to end its military activities in the Mideast or ultimately block it from developing a nuclear weapon………
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini praised the agreement as a path to “a new chapter in international relations” that uses diplomacy to overcome decades of tensions. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that while the pact was not perfect, it was an important achievement and represented a foundation for a new diplomatic beginning.
Iran removed thousands of centrifuges that had been used to enrich uranium and shipped out the majority of its existing stockpile. World powers lifted their sanctions, unlocking billions of dollars for Iran and paving the way for new business opportunities there. Last month, U.S. aerospace giant Boeing announced a tentative deal to sell 100 jets to Iran’s state-owned airline.
Throughout the past 12 months, however, officials on both sides, particularly from Iran and the U.S., have spoken about the deal with comments that range from suspicion to outright rejection.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Wednesday that if the world powers fail to meet their responsibilities, then Iran stands ready to restore its nuclear program. Meanwhile, some members of the U.S. Congress want to ban the United States from purchasing nuclear-related material from Iran, accuse the Obama administration of giving up too much too soon in the negotiations, and are wary about how Iran is spending its newly unlocked money.
Iran has complained that despite the lifting of sanctions that once barred financial institutions from doing business with the country, foreign banks remain reluctant to be involved in transactions…….http://www.voanews.com/content/one-year-after-iran-nuclear-deal-sides-remain-compliant-but-wary/3417840.html
Russian diplomat calls for returning nuclear weapons to producer countries http://tass.ru/en/politics/887597 July 11, 20:16 Barack Obama plans to use his final six months in office for putting forward a number of nuclear arms control initiatives, possibly offering Russia to extend the New Start Treaty for another 5 years MOSCOW, July 11 /TASS/. Return of all nuclear weapons to the territories of countries where they have been produced would be a vital contribution to world security, Russia’s Permanent Representative to NATO Alexander Grushko said in an interview aired by the Rossiya 24 television news channel on Monday.
“It would be a contribution to international security if all nuclear charges were returned to the territories of countries, which possess them. This is exactly what Russia did,” Grushko said commenting the US authorities’ intention to offer Russia to extend the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) for another five years.
“It is necessary to bear in mind that as major nuclear players, including Russia and the United States, the role of nuclear potentials possessed by other countries will increase. Therefore, the approach will be totally different: it should be an integrated approach,” Grushko said.
According to the Washington Post electronic version, US President Barack Obama plans to use his final six months in office for putting forward a number of nuclear arms control initiatives, including, possibly, to offer Russia to extend the New Start Treaty for another five years. The publication said that the US National Security Council had discussed the topic at its meetings twice over the past two weeks.
Year after nuclear deal, Iran’s high expectations not met, Christian Science Monitor To sell Iranians on the nuclear deal, President Rouhani promised a new era. But the consensus is it has yet to materialize, and many blame the US. By Scott Peterson, Staff writer JULY 14, 2016 ISTANBUL, TURKEY — Joy erupted on the streets of Tehran a year ago Thursday, when Iran signed a landmark nuclear deal with six world powers hailed as a victory of diplomacy over war.
The deal was marketed by both sides as a “win-win”: Iran would dismantle the most controversial aspects of its nuclear program – minimizing the chance of acquiring a nuclear weapon for at least a decade – in exchange for the lifting of sanctions that crippled its economy.
As jubilant Iranians waved flags and heralded an easing of Iran’s isolation, President Hassan Rouhani promised that “a page has turned in the history of Iran.”
But one year later, the 159-page accord is a study in unmet high expectations for change, as hard-liners in both Iran and the US Congress fight to undermine the deal to ensure as little political benefit as possible for the architects of the accord – Mr. Rouhani and President Barack Obama – as well as for their long-term strategic foes, in Washington and Tehran.
Analysts say the Iranian president promised more than he could deliver.
“Rouhani had no choice other than leveraging pent-up public demands to rally elite support for diplomacy; the hype was as indispensable as its ensuing disillusionment was inevitable,” says Ali Vaez, the senior Iran analyst for the Brussels-based International Crisis Group.
“The deal has not ushered in a new era. It is, at best, taking Iran back to where it was before the nuclear crisis,” says Mr. Vaez. “The establishment deemed ending economic isolation as an exigency for preserving its power. Now it fears rapid economic opening could loosen its grip on power.
All sides have strictly adhered to the letter of the deal: Iran has dramatically reduced the scale of its nuclear infrastructure – reconfiguring a heavy water nuclear reactor and a deeply buried uranium enrichment facility, for example – while keeping a limited capacity to produce fuel for nuclear energy. And non-nuclear sanctions have been lifted, partially ushering Iran back into the global economy.
But the deal has not yet enhanced Rouhani’s ability to fulfill his promise of expanding social freedoms, or of creating a less securitized atmosphere. In fact, the opposite may be true, after steady warnings from Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, about “infiltration” and “soft war” from the United States and the West.
US and European banks also are proving reluctant to engage with Iran, fearful that non-nuclear US sanctions might bite, thereby depriving Iran of the full hoped-for benefits of the deal. The House is readying new measures this week that will impose further sanctions over terrorism and human rights abuses, or limit Iran’s use of the dollar, all of which the White House says it will veto………..http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Middle-East/2016/0714/Year-after-nuclear-deal-Iran-s-high-expectations-not-met
Chilcot: UK refusing to help clean up Iraq after raining down radioactive shells https://www.rt.com/uk/350804-iraq-chilcot-depleted-uranium/#.V4VPdDurb8w.facebook 12 Jul, 2016 Britain has no intention of cleaning up its deadly radioactive legacy in Iraq or even monitoring the terrifying impact depleted uranium (DU) shells will have on the population in the future, it has been claimed.
Writing in the Ecologist on Tuesday, Doug Weir, who is coordinator of the International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons (ICBUW), says that hidden within the Chilcot report is a previously classified military document setting out the UK’s rejection of any duty to cleanse Iraq of DU of unexploded ordnance (UXO).
In it, the clearance of unexploded ordnance and DU is considered and the Ministry of Defence [MoD] argues that it has: “… no long-term legal responsibility to clean up DU from Iraq” Weir writes.
“Instead it proposes that surface lying fragments of DU only be removed on ‘an opportunity basis’ – i.e. if they come across them in the course of other operations.”
This indicates, according to Weir, that the UK has effectively swerved any obligation to clear up after itself in Iraq.
“In other words, the UK’s stance is that chemically toxic and radioactive DU ‘ash’ from spent munitions is strictly the problem of the country in which the munitions were used – in this case Iraq – and that the UK, which fired the DU shells, has no formal responsibility of cleaning up the mess.”
DU ammunition is used in only two UK weapons systems – the Royal Navy’s PHALANX Close-In Weapon System and in the Charm 3 ammunition fired by the Challenger 2 main battle tank.
However, the route to shirking responsibility may not be as easy as the UK government seems to hope. In October, the UN will meet to debate a sixth resolution on DU weapons. It’s a move which will give succor to the government of Iraq, which in 2014 called for the international community to help clean up DU.
Weir remains hopeful that the UN meeting may be able to encourage governments to take responsibility for the use and fallout of the weapons.
“When the United Nations last discussed DU two years ago, 150 governments recognised the need for states to provide assistance to countries like Iraq,” he wrote.
“This October, our Coalition will add our voice to those of the states affected by DU weapons in calling for an end to the use of DU weapons and for the users to finally accept responsibility for their legacy,” he added.
Iran Nuclear Deal Faces Triple Threat in Congress on Anniversary http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-07-12/iran-nuclear-deal-faces-triple-threat-in-congress-on-anniversary Kambiz Foroohar kambizf
Three measures seek to derail agreement signed a year ago
Iran says it still waiting for full benefits from the accord
Republican lawmakers are pushing three measures to roll back a nuclear agreement with Iran, while the Obama administration’s lead negotiator for the accord defended its implementation one year after the deal was struck.
Three bills dealing with the agreement, under which Iran agreed to curtail its nuclear program in return for an easing of economic sanctions, are scheduled for a vote this week in the House of Representatives, where Republicans have a majority. The measures would then go to the Senate, which may not take them up before September.
One of the proposals would impose new sanctions on Iran over any sponsorship of terrorism or human rights violations. Another would bar the purchase from the Islamic Republic of “heavy water,” a non-radioactive byproduct of both the manufacturing of nuclear weapons and nuclear energy. The third would block Iran’s access to the U.S. financial system, including the use of the dollar.
All three measures have been met with promises of a veto from the White House. Without the Iranian accord, “we would have been forced to confront the reality of how to address Iran’s nuclear program in a world where diplomacy had failed,” Stephen Mull, the State Department’s lead coordinator for Iran nuclear implementation, said Tuesday at a Bipartisan Policy Center conference in Washington.
‘No Better Deal’
“There was no better deal to be had,” Mull said. “If Iran continues to meet its obligation and we walk away, we walk away alone. ”
While the U.S. remains concerned about Iran’s missile program, support for terrorism and human rights violations, within the confines of the nuclear agreement, “this deal is working,” Mull added.
After a decade of isolation under U.S.-led international sanctions, Iran is now seeing greater interest from businesses and banks in its $370 billion economy. However, Iranian officials complain that six months after the economic sanctions were eased, the country has yet to witness the financial benefits many predicted.
“Iran has a lot of homework to do,” Mull said.The three bills expected to be voted on this week in the House are in addition to a measure introduced to derail Boeing Co.’s agreement last month to provide 109 aircraft to Iran’s national airline, a deal valued at more than $17.6 billion. That would be the biggest business transaction between the two countries since the 1979 Islamic Revolution and the U.S. hostage crisis.
In issuing its veto threat this week, the White House emphasized that the legislation would undermine the viability of the nuclear agreement.
The deal “is critical to ensuring that Iran’s nuclear program is and will remain exclusively peaceful, which is profoundly in the national security interest of the U.S. and the international community,” according to the statement.
SA backs India to join Nuclear Suppliers Group enca, SOUTH AFRICA Friday 8 July 2016 PRETORIA – South African President Jacob Zuma agreed on Friday to support India’s controversial bid to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), an international body that controls commerce in nuclear materials and technology.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced this at a joint press conference at the Union buildings in Pretoria on Friday after meeting Zuma.
He thanked Zuma for his promise of support in the meeting….
- The bid is controversial because all the current NSG members, including South Africa, are also members of the NPT, the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty, which restricts the possession of nuclear weapons to the five major powers, the US, UK, France, Russia and China.
India acquired nuclear weapons in 1974 and so could not join the NPT, which it in any case did not want to because it regards it as discriminatory.
When she was asked earlier this week about this, International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane noted that all current NSG members were also members of the NPT. But she also hinted that in his one-on-one meeting with Modi, Zuma might lend his support to India’s bid…….https://www.enca.com/south-africa/sa-backs-india-to-join-nsg
Hinkley Point C critics try to derail it amid Brexit vote turmoil
Board of EDF, energy project’s key backer, is at risk of fracturing as ex-supporters worry about uncertainty of British government, Guardian, Terry Macalister, 2 July 16 Britain’s flagship energy project, Hinkley Point C, is hanging by a thread as critics inside key backer EDF use the political turmoil from the Brexit vote to try to derailthe already delayed £18bn scheme.
Jean Bernard Levy, the EDF group chief executive, and the French and British governments, have in recent days insisted they are as committed as ever to a positive final investment decision being taken as soon as possible.
But well-placed sources in Paris have told the Guardian that the already divided EDF board, which must make that decision, is in danger of fracturing further as former supporters of the project worry about Brexit.
“The situation for Levy was already very delicate,” said one source. “But it has become a lot more difficult because there is so little certainty around the British government,” they added. “No one could know today which way a vote [of the board on Hinkley] would go.”
Those arguing against the project say it is impossible to make any decisions when it is unclear who will be the future prime minister, chancellor of the exchequer and energy and climate change secretary.
Highly critical EDF unions in France, which have six representatives on the main board, are pressing waiverers among the five independent board members who have previously supported Levy to change their minds…….https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/jul/01/hinkley-point-c-critics-try-to-derail-it-amid-brexit-vote-turmoil?CMP=share_btn_tw
EDF workers’ committee expected to demand that nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point in Somerset is delayed http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/markets/article-3672592/EDF-workers-committee-expected-demand-nuclear-power-plant-Hinkley-Point-Somerset-delayed.html By CITY & FINANCE REPORTER FOR THE DAILY MAIL, 4 July 2016 EDF’S workers’ committee is expected to demand today that a nuclear power plant at Hinkley, Somerset, is delayed.
The energy firm has yet to make a decision on how to raise £18bn of funds needed for the power station, and has put off deciding until September to allow time to consult the unions.
The unions are obliged to deliver their opinion today on whether Hinkley should go ahead. But three of them issued a statement last week to say that Britain’s vote to leave the European Union added new elements of uncertainty.
It follows a legal action launched earlier this month in French courts by EDF’s Works Council, who asked for the project to be put off.
It is feared that if the unions do not support the project it could further delay Hinkley, which was due to be completed in 2017 but is currently expected to be finished by 2025.
U.N. Decolonization Committee adopts French Polynesia Resolution, Overseas Territories Review , 3 July 16
Russia floated its largest and most powerful nuclear-powered icebreaker last month, upping the ante in what is literally the coldest global gold rush.
The ice-smashing ship was Russia’s sixth reactor-driven polar vessel. The United States doesn’t have a single one.
Moscow’s dominance of the northern seas — courtesy of vast investments — has America and the West worried. Here’s why………http://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/russia-s-latest-nuclear-powered-icebreaker-extends-arctic-dominance-n602381
Pakistan, India exchange information on nuclear facilities http://dailytimes.com.pk/islamabad/01-Jan-06/pakistan-india-exchange-information-on-nuclear-facilities ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and India on Sunday exchanged lists of their nuclear facilities on Sunday, a requirement every January 1 under an accord in which they promised not to attack each other’s nuclear installations.
“The governments of Pakistan and India today exchanged lists of their respective nuclear installations and facilities in accordance with Article II of the Agreement on Prohibition of Attacks Against Nuclear Installations and Facilities between Pakistan and India of December 31, 1988,” a Foreign Office statement said.
Zaheer A. Janjua, Director of the India Desk in Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs handed over the list to an officer of the Indian High Commission in Islamabad at the Foreign Office at 11:00am PST, the statement said.
India handed over their list to Muhammad Khalid Jamali, First Secretary of the Pakistan High Commission at the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi at 11:30am IST, it added. The statement did not give any details of which installations and facilities are mentioned in the lists. The list usually includes civilian nuclear power plants and gives the exact location of each such installation.
Top foreign ministry officials from Pakistan, led by Foreign Secretary Riaz Muhammad Khan will meet Indian officials on January 17 and 18 in New Delhi for talks on Kashmir and other issues. Railway officials are also slated to meet in New Delhi on January 5 and 6 to discuss reopening a rail link between Munabao and Khokhrapar, which was terminated after a 1965 war between the two countries.
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