Indian Prime Minister Morarji Desai has said his country would never develop atomic weapons, and that he wanted to live in peace with neighbouring Pakistan.
Indian Prime Minister Morarji Desai has said his country would never develop atomic weapons, and that he wanted to live in peace with neighbouring Pakistan. Mr. Desai was talking in Paris on Thursday (16 June) after talks with French Prime Minister Raymond Barre, and President Valery Giscard d'Estaing.
SYNOPSIS: His engagement at the Elysee Palace, in Paris, the official residence of President Giscard d'Estating, was the more enjoyable of the two duties for Mr. Desai in Paris on Wednesday (15 June). He was to have dinner with the French President. Earlier, the Indian head of state had held a mor formal session of talks with Prime Minister Raymond Barre on India's stand in world matters and most importantly the strategic Indian ocean, where France has the largest permanent naval fleet of any country.
Mr. Desai told M. Giscard d'Estaing that, politically, India was leaning less towards the Soviet Union and keeping "less distant" from the United States, following a policy of strict non-alignment. Mr. Desai assured the French leaders that his country had no atomic weapons, now, or in the future. Following France's sale to Pakistan of a controversial nuclear re-processing plant, Mr. Desai said that if Pakistan wanted to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, then India would help.