[Senate Hearing 110-710]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
S. Hrg. 110-710
AGREEMENT FOR PEACEFUL NUCLEAR COOPERATION WITH INDIA
COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS
UNITED STATES SENATE
ONE HUNDRED TENTH CONGRESS
SEPTEMBER 18, 2008
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COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS
JOSEPH R. BIDEN, Jr., Delaware, Chairman
CHRISTOPHER J. DODD, Connecticut RICHARD G. LUGAR, Indiana
JOHN F. KERRY, Massachusetts CHUCK HAGEL, Nebraska
RUSSELL D. FEINGOLD, Wisconsin NORM COLEMAN, Minnesota
BARBARA BOXER, California BOB CORKER, Tennessee
BILL NELSON, Florida GEORGE V. VOINOVICH, Ohio
BARACK OBAMA, Illinois LISA MURKOWSKI, Alaska
ROBERT MENENDEZ, New Jersey JIM DeMINT, South Carolina
BENJAMIN L. CARDIN, Maryland JOHNNY ISAKSON, Georgia
ROBERT P. CASEY, Jr., Pennsylvania DAVID VITTER, Louisiana
JIM WEBB, Virginia JOHN BARRASSO, Wyoming
Antony J. Blinken, Staff Director
Kenneth A. Myers, Jr., Republican Staff Director
C O N T E N T S
Burns, Hon. William J., Under Secretary for Political Affairs,
Department of State, Washington, DC............................ 9
Prepared statement......................................... 12
Dodd, Hon. Christopher J., U.S. Senator From Connecticut......... 1
Lugar, Hon. Richard G., U.S. Senator From Indiana................ 6
Rood, Hon. John G., Acting Under Secretary for Arms Control and
International Security; Accompanied by Richard J.K. Stratford,
Director, Office of Nuclear Energy, Safety, and Security
Affairs, Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation,
Department of State, Washington, DC............................ 16
Prepared statement......................................... 18
Additional Material Submitted for the Record
Prepared Statement of Hon. George V. Voinovich, U.S. Senator From
Responses of Under Secretary William Burns and Acting Under
Secretary John Rood to Questions Submitted for the Record by
Senator John Kerry............................................. 49
Responses of Under Secretary William Burns and Acting Under
Secretary John Rood to Questions Submitted for the Record by
Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr.................................... 52
Material Submitted for the Record by Senator Barbara Boxer....... 55
AGREEMENT FOR PEACEFUL NUCLEAR COOPERATION WITH INDIA
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, 2008
Committee on Foreign Relations,
The Committee met, pursuant to notice, at 2:35 p.m., in
room SD-419, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Hon. Christopher
J. Dodd presiding.
Present: Senators Dodd, Kerry, Feingold, Boxer, Webb,
Lugar, Hagel, Corker, and Barrasso.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. CHRISTOPHER J. DODD,
U.S. SENATOR FROM CONNECTICUT
Senator Dodd. The Committee will come to order.
And let me welcome Ambassador Burns once again. We could
have just recessed the hearing yesterday instead of adjourning
it. For those of you who were not in the room, Ambassador Burns
was the witness before the committee dealing with the events in
Georgia over the last month and a half and did an excellent
I think I speak for all of us here in the committee in
appreciating very much your testimony and response to questions
regarding that situation. And you are welcome back here again
today to talk about an agreement for the peaceful nuclear
cooperation with India.
And again, let me apologize to my dear friend and colleague
from Delaware, Senator Biden, the chairman of this committee,
who is, as we all know, otherwise occupied in other places
around the country, but has been deeply involved in this issue
and extremely knowledgeable about it and would very much have
liked to have been here to be a part of this debate and
And so, it is a poor substitute that I am chairing the
committee on his behalf. Having spent a good part of the last
week dealing with financial services, an easy jump is to go
from that to a United States-India nuclear accord. I am being
facetious, obviously, in terms of the intricacies of all of
But I am very grateful to Ed Levine and Anthony Weir of
Senator Biden's staff and the committee staff, not to mention
Fulton Armstrong of my office and others. And Senator Lugar, of
course, has been deeply involved in these issues. So we will
I have an opening statement and comment I want to make.
Senator Biden has one as well. But I will ask consent to
include them in the record for purposes, and then other members
may have some comments.
My good friend Chuck Hagel is here. He may have some
thoughts on the subject matter, and others who show up may as
well. Then we will get to you very quickly, Mr. Ambassador and
Mr. Secretary, for your thoughts on this matter, and then some
And I would tell you in advance, having gone over this last
evening and today, some of the questions I may very well submit
in writing. Some of them are very technical in nature and will
require a written response, I think, probably rather than just
having some sort of spontaneous response. But timeliness is
important here, obviously, given the constraints we are under
and the question of whether or not we are going to deal with
this issue in a very truncated period of time that remains
before this session of Congress adjourns.
So with that, let me begin, if I can.
Today, the Committee on Foreign Relations holds a very
important and, I might add, historic hearing. It is important
because the Congress of the United States, the Senate, is being
asked to approve an agreement that may have major consequences
for U.S. foreign policy in Asia and for nuclear
nonproliferation worldwide. It is historic because approval of
this agreement should enable the United States and India to get
around the biggest obstacle to charting a new course in
relations between our two great democracies.
I want to underscore the geopolitical significance of this
agreement, if I may. For nearly two generations now, India cast
itself as a nation proudly unaligned with the superpowers--not
just on arms control and proliferation issues, but really in
its whole political orientation.
Today, however, India has become a major actor in the
world, and it increasingly sees itself in concert with other
global powers, rather than in opposition to them. This is true
on counterterrorism, on the need for stability in South Asia,
on the fight against infectious diseases, and even on
nonproliferation. Its relationship with the United States,
quite candidly, has never been closer.
That is why Indian Prime Minister Singh has devoted such
energy and courage, I might add, to bring his Parliament along
and to press for this agreement to come into force. He has put
himself and his party on the line for this. In fact, just that
debate and discussion could be a lengthy one in terms of what
has gone on politically in India in terms of bringing us to
This is not about improving India's nuclear weapons or even
about solving India's energy crisis. At heart, what we are
talking about is turning a page in India's relationships with
the world, putting its sense of nuclear grievance behind it so
that India can work with other great countries from a position
of reasonable equality.
The nuclear cooperation agreement that is before this
committee is not perfect. As today's hearing proceeds, some of
those imperfections will be noted and discussed by a number of
our colleagues. But approval of this agreement will still be a
milestone in United States-Indian relations. And approve it, in
my view, we must. We would be well advised to approve it this
month, moreover, rather than waiting until next year.
Allow me to explain briefly why acting now is important. If
we want to adjust U.S. law or policy to implement this
agreement in the best manner, we have an opportunity to make
those adjustments in the bill that will waive the Atomic Energy
Act timelines for considering this agreement.
I hope that opponents of the agreement will let us do that
and approve the agreement this month, rather than forcing a
delay that will only breed nervousness while we wait to finish
the job next year, when we will not need to waive any timelines
and will not, I might add, even more importantly, have an
opportunity to adjust U.S. policy.
This agreement is not a partisan issue. It had strong
support on both sides of the aisle in 2006, and it has support
today. And it is important to approve the agreement while we
have a responsive partner in India to begin implementing it.
The first step in reaching out to India was taken by
President Bill Clinton in the year 2000. India and the United
States pledged to continue their nuclear test moratorium, to
avoid arms races, to work for a Fissile Material Cut-Off
Treaty, and to guard against the proliferation of weapons of
President Bush continued that work that President Clinton
had begun. In July 2005, President Bush and Indian Prime
Minister Singh agreed that our two nations would negotiate a
peaceful nuclear cooperation agreement, and the United States
committed to work to get the Nuclear Suppliers Group to permit
nuclear commerce with India. India, in turn, would improve its
export controls and regulations, separate its civilian nuclear
program from its military one, and signed a safeguards
agreement and an additional protocol to that agreement with the
International Atomic Energy Agency.
In 2006, India published its plan for separating its
civilian nuclear program from its military one. That plan calls
for accepting safeguards in a phased manner through 2014, over
14 existing or planned nuclear reactors and 6 uranium fuel
production facilities. India added that all future civilian
nuclear facilities would come under safeguards, but it reserved
the right to decide which facilities would be civilian.
At the end of 2006, the United States Congress enacted
legislation to allow the President to negotiate and submit to
Congress a peaceful nuclear cooperation agreement with India.
Legislation was needed because India, although a non-nuclear
weapon state under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and
under U.S. law, actually has a nuclear weapons program and will
not accept safeguards over all its nuclear facilities, as
called for in the Atomic Energy Act.
I, along with many others, supported the Hyde Act, which
gave the go-ahead for the agreement that is before us today.
Indeed, 85 members of the United States Senate supported it as
well. But that strong vote of approval came about only after
this committee addressed the nonproliferation concerns that
nuclear trade with India raises.
One of these concerns was nuclear testing. India pledged to
maintain its test moratorium, but it has not signed the
Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. Congress made clear in the Hyde
Act that any Indian nuclear test would end the waivers
authorized by the act. It also called for an end to nuclear
commerce with India in the unlikely event that India were to
engage in nuclear or ballistic missile proliferation.
Another concern that was raised was whether to engage in
nuclear trade relating to such sensitive activities as uranium
enrichment, spent fuel reprocessing, and heavy water
production. Congress agreed to limit such commerce with India
and made it U.S. policy to seek agreement in the Nuclear
Suppliers Group to further restrict transfers of sensitive
equipment and technology, including to India.
In order to get India to separate its civilian nuclear
program from its military one, President Bush promised to help
ensure an uninterrupted supply of nuclear fuel for India's
civilian reactors. Few in Congress liked that promise, which
suggested that the United States might help India to avoid any
pain if sanctions were imposed on it. So the Hyde Act made it
U.S. policy that any Indian fuel reserve should be commensurate
with reasonable operating requirements of its safeguarded
Finally, the Hyde Act required the President to make
several certifications before submitting the nuclear
cooperation agreement that, again, now is before us. The tests
that India had to meet included the following:
Providing the United States and the IAEA a credible
separation plan for India's nuclear programs and filing a
declaration with the IAEA regarding its civilian facilities and
Negotiating a safeguards agreement with the IAEA, which had
to provide for safeguards in perpetuity that are in accord with
normal IAEA practices.
Third, making significant progress toward concluding the
additional protocol to its safeguards agreement, which would
give the IAEA access to additional Indian facilities that
involved nuclear activities.
Fourth, working with the United States to get a Fissile
Material Cut-Off Treaty adopted.
Fifth, working with the United States to prevent the spread
of sensitive nuclear technology.
And six, improving its export control regime and adhering
to the export guidelines of the Nuclear Suppliers Group and the
Missile Technology Control Regime.
I might add, in addition, the Nuclear Suppliers Group had
to agree by consensus to a waiver of its guidelines to India.
A week ago, the President determined that each of those
standards had been met. He submitted the agreement to the
United States Congress, along with the Nuclear Proliferation
Assessment Statement required by the Atomic Energy Act.
An important question before us, as we review the agreement
and the President's certifications, is whether they comply with
the Atomic Energy Act and the Hyde Act. For example, the Hyde
Act requires that ``India has provided the United States and
the IAEA with a credible plan to separate civil and military
nuclear facilities and has filed a declaration regarding its
civil facilities with the IAEA.''
That requirement was not forced on the administration. In
fact, this requirement was proposed by the administration.
India announced its separation plan in 2006, and it
provided that plan to the IAEA 2 months ago. It has yet to
provide a declaration, however, and will not do so until the
Congress approves the United States-India agreement.
The administration says that the separation plan contains
the declaration and that we shouldn't insist upon a separate
declaration. I think we need to discuss that matter today. Mr.
Ambassador, we certainly will in the questions before you.
There are also aspects of the agreement itself that should
be examined closely. I intend to do my part in the questions.
Among the issues I will raise are some of the following:
Whether the agreement satisfies the requirement in the
Atomic Energy Act, and I quote it again, ``a stipulation that
the United States shall have the right to require the return of
any nuclear materials and equipment'' if India detonates a
nuclear explosive device or terminates or abrogates its
Whether the agreement satisfies the requirement for ``a
guaranty'' that no fissile material that India obtains or
produces pursuant to this agreement ``will be stored in any
facility that has not been approved in advance by the United
Whether the President's nuclear fuel assurances to India,
which are repeated in the agreement and paraphrased in India's
safeguards agreement, would undermine our ability to respond to
an Indian nuclear test.
And whether India's safeguards agreement with the IAEA are
sufficient protection against possible diversions of nuclear
technology and non-nuclear material from India's civilian
nuclear program to its military program.
We enacted the Hyde Act in December 2006, as many will
recall. It took another 21 months, I might point out, before
the agreement was submitted to Congress.
Given the tight congressional calendar that I mentioned at
the outset of this hearing, we have our work cut out for us if
we are to address these questions and enact legislation before
the Congress in this session adjourns for the year. But we are
working hard to get that done, and today's hearing is a vital
part of that effort.
We are especially fortunate to have Under Secretary Bill
Burns as our chief witness, and we thank you once again.
Ambassador Burns is very well known to us and very well
respected on this issue. He led the U.S. delegation at the most
recent meeting of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, which agreed to
allow nuclear commerce with India. Secretary Burns, once again
we welcome you before the committee.
I would also note that Acting Under Secretary of State for
Arms Control and International Security John Rood has joined
Under Secretary Burns, and I understand that he also has
prepared a statement that he would make. He, too, has been
active in the negotiations relating to this agreement. We
welcome you as well to the committee.
I would also like to call the committee's attention to a
statement, as I mentioned earlier, by Senator Biden, who is
unavoidably not with us, for obvious reasons. And his
statement, without objection, will be made a part of the
[The prepared statement of Senator Biden follows:]
Prepared Statement of Hon. Joseph R. Biden, Jr.,
U.S. Senator From Delaware
I am very pleased that the peaceful nuclear cooperation agreement
between the United States and India has been submitted to Congress for
its review and approval. We should seize this opportunity to build on
the foundation laid by President Bill Clinton and cement a new,
cooperative relationship with India, the world's largest democracy.
Two years ago, Chairman Lugar and I worked with the administration
to enact legislation that changed 30 years of U.S. nonproliferation
policy. We agreed to let the administration negotiate and submit to
Congress a peaceful nuclear cooperation agreement with India, despite
the fact that India has a nuclear weapons program. That wasn't easy. It
took soul-searching and compromise on the part of many Members of the
Senate regarding the standards for such an agreement and for U.S.
I hope that in a similar fashion, we will be able to approve the
U.S.-India agreement before the 110th Congress adjourns. I believe we
should do all we can to make that happen. If that requires passing a
law or joint resolution that waives the 30-day committee consultation
period mandated by section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act, I think we
should do that.
We should also make sure, however, that the agreement and any
exports made pursuant to it are consistent with U.S law and with our
national security interests. As I have stated before, both publicly and
privately, if we are to preserve the consensus of 2006 in favor of this
agreement, we must make sure that the concerns addressed in the Hyde
Act are also addressed in the agreement and in U.S. policy.
I thank Senator Dodd for his willingness to chair this important
hearing, and I thank both him and Senator Lugar for the efforts that
will be required of them if we are to secure approval of the U.S.-India
agreement. Finally, I am gratified that Under Secretary Burns has
become such a frequent witness before the committee. His wisdom and
experience are serving us very well in difficult times.
Senator Dodd. That was a long opening statement. I
apologize to my colleagues and others. But this is a very
important and historic, as I said, a considerably important
agreement that needs to be addressed. So I tried to outline
some of the history and where things are at this particular
As I mentioned earlier, the former chairman of this
committee is very knowledgeable on this subject matter, and I
will now turn to Senator Lugar for any opening comments he may
have. He has been a major supporter of the safeguards
activities of the IAEA, which will be needed for any peaceful
nuclear trade with India.
And so, we thank him for his work over the years on the
subject matter, and then I will turn to other colleagues.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. RICHARD G. LUGAR,
U.S. SENATOR FROM INDIANA
Senator Lugar. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
I join you welcoming our witnesses. I especially want to
thank our good friend Under Secretary Bill Burns for coming
back to the committee after such a short spell away from us.
In December 2006, Congress overwhelmingly approved
legislation setting out the criteria under which we would
consider a so-called ``123 Agreement'' between the United
States and India. In advance of consideration of that important
legislation, the Committee on Foreign Relations undertook an
extensive review of the agreement. We held three public
hearings with testimony from 17 witnesses, including Secretary
of State Condoleezza Rice.
We received a classified briefing from then Under Secretary
of State Nick Burns and Bob Joseph. Numerous briefings were
held for staff with experts from the Congressional Research
Service, the State Department, the intelligence community, and
the National Security Council. I submitted 174 written
questions for the record to the Department of State on details
of the agreement and posted the answers on the committee Web
The committee constructed a bill that allowed the United
States to seize an important strategic opportunity while
reinforcing United States nonproliferation efforts and
maintaining our obligations under the NPT. The committee
approved this legislation with a bipartisan vote of 16-2 on
June 29, 2006.
Our efforts and those of the House resulted in final
passage of the Hyde Act on December 9, 2006, and it was signed
into law by President Bush on December 18, 2006.
We expected India to move quickly to negotiate a new
safeguards agreement with the IAEA and then to seek consensus
from the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the NSG, in accordance with
the Hyde Act. Unfortunately, domestic political divisions in
India led to a delay that lasted nearly 2 years. Final action
on these tasks was not completed until the last several weeks.
India engaged and obtained the approval of a new safeguards
agreement with the IAEA on August 1. NSG consensus was achieved
on September 6. The administration submitted the agreement to
Congress on September 11. This leaves Congress with the
difficult task of approving this agreement in the short time
before we adjourn.
Under existing law, the committee would normally be in a
30-day period of consultation on the proposed agreement, after
which it would have 60 days to consider a resolution approving
the agreement. Such a resolution would be privileged and
However, if we hope to pass the resolution this year, we
cannot wait until all 30 days of the consultation period have
transpired. And given the need to waive most of the 30-day
consultation period, a simple, privileged resolution is
unavailable to us. Amendments will be in order, and there is no
guarantee of a vote on final passage.
The agreement before us is complex and will require the
concentrated attention of members. The legislation Congress
passed in 2006 laid out seven determination requirements that
the President must make in order to waive provisions of the
Atomic Energy Act and submit the agreement to Congress. And the
seven determinations are as follows:
India has provided the U.S. and the IAEA with a separation
plan for its civilian and military facilities and filed a
declaration regarding civilian facilities with the IAEA.
Second, India has concluded all legal steps prior to
signature for a safeguards agreement in perpetuity with the
India and the IAEA are making substantial progress in
completing an additional protocol, but it is not completed.
India is working actively with the United States to
conclude a Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty.
India is working with and supporting the United States to
prevent the spread of enrichment and reprocessing technology.
And India is taking the necessary steps to secure nuclear
materials and technology.
And the NSG has decided by consensus to permit supply to
India of nuclear items under an exception to their guidelines.
Now last week, the President determined that each of these
requirements has been met. Today's hearing will review these
determinations in preparation for congressional acceptance. In
addition, there were four main policy and legal questions that
must be resolved.
First, Indian leaders claim that the United States has
agreed that India can test its nuclear weapons and obtain
stocks of nuclear fuel to guard against sanctions. They also
claim that the United States has conferred the legal status of
a nuclear weapons state under the NPT on India.
The President's message to the Congress transmitting the
proposed agreement states that any provisions in the agreement
are political commitments and not legally binding. Which
explanation, in your judgment, is factual? And how do these
conflicting statements affect the operation and implementation
of the agreement?
Second, is the agreement fully consistent with United
States laws that would require termination of the proposed
agreement and cessation of nuclear exports to India if it
detonates a nuclear explosive device or proliferates nuclear
Third, are the terms of the proposed agreement regarding
fuel supply from the United States to India, or supply of fuel
from third countries to India, or the creation of a strategic
reserve of such fuel in India, consistent with the intent of
the Hyde Act? How would the agreement work in cases in which
the United States decides to terminate fuel supply to India or
demands the return of nuclear material and equipment to the
United States in response to an Indian violation of the 123
Agreement or its new safeguards agreement with the IAEA?
And fourth, to what extent has the United States created a
new kind of 123 Agreement and model for international nuclear
cooperation that may benefit additional countries that have not
accepted the NPT and that do not have a comprehensive
safeguards agreement with the IAEA?
These issues, in my judgment, must be addressed during our
hearing today. Now we need to establish the definitive U.S.
interpretation of this agreement. We want to avoid any
ambiguity about the effect of the agreement on United States
law and policy.
Again, I thank Senator Dodd and Chairman Biden for
scheduling and holding this hearing. I am hopeful that Congress
will complete our important work on this agreement this year. I
am confident if we have total cooperation from the
administration and strong bipartisan teamwork here in Congress,
we can succeed.
I thank the Chairman.
Senator Dodd. Thank you very much, Senator Lugar.
And let me turn to Senator Hagel, Senator Corker. Any
comments you want to make at all? Bob, any opening comments?
Well, again, Mr. Ambassador--you are actually called Mr.
Ambassador and Mr. Secretary. You have kind of dual hats. Is
there a preference you like?
Secretary Burns. Either one is fine.
Senator Dodd. Either one is fine. Well, Mr. Secretary,
welcome. And again, any supporting materials and documents that
you think are worthwhile will be submitted for the record, and
Mr. Rood as well, the same for you would be the case, and our
colleagues as well, so we get a full body of evidence here for
The floor is yours.
STATEMENT OF HON. WILLIAM J. BURNS, UNDER SECRETARY FOR
POLITICAL AFFAIRS, DEPARTMENT OF STATE, WASHINGTON, DC
Secretary Burns. Thank you very much.
Mr. Chairman, Senator Lugar, Senator Hagel, Senator Corker,
thank you for the opportunity to testify today. And let me
express once again the administration's appreciation to you, to
the committee, and to the Congress for your willingness to
consider on such short notice the United States-India Agreement
for Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation, also known as the 123
Mr. Chairman, from the very outset, as you emphasized, this
initiative has depended upon strong bipartisan support. It is
anchored by a historic transformation of our relations with
India that began more than a decade ago, when both countries
were governed by different political parties.
The United States-India relationship transcends both party
and partisanship and so, too, has the United States-India Civil
Nuclear Cooperation Initiative, as reflected in the large
bipartisan majorities in both houses which passed the Hyde Act
Mr. Chairman, I have submitted a written statement for the
record, and my colleagues and I look forward to answering your
questions. What I will try to do now very briefly is to focus
on three issues. Why is this initiative so important to the
United States? Why is it so important to move forward with such
urgency? And what is in the package the President has asked
Congress to consider?
Mr. Chairman, there are powerful strategic, environmental,
nonproliferation, and economic reasons to support this
initiative. Strategically, it reflects the transformation of
our relations and a broad recognition of India's emergence on
the global stage.
By the year 2025, India will likely rank among the world's
five largest economies. It is already among our fastest growing
export markets. It will soon be the world's most populous
We share democratic principles, unity, and diversity,
traditions of family and community, intertwined economies, and
a commitment to fighting terrorism. Indeed, Mr. Chairman,
nearly 3 million Indian Americans have made India's cultures
and traditions a vital part of the American melting pot.
We are cooperating with India in many ways--on HIV/AIDS,
defense and security, trade and investment, and also in
Afghanistan, where India is today the fifth-largest donor to
civilian reconstruction efforts. So it is an abiding American
interest to develop a strong and forward-looking partnership
with the world's largest democracy.
This civil nuclear initiative is about advancing that
common strategic vision. Environmentally, this initiative will
help India's population of more than a billion to meet their
rapidly rising energy needs. India is growing at rates of 8 to
9 percent per year. And to sustain those rates of growth, it
must expand its supply of energy exponentially.
Between 1980 and 2001, India's demand increased by a
staggering 208 percent. By contrast, China, so often described
as the world's next big energy consumer, saw just 130 percent
increase, about half of India's, over the same period. India
will soon outstrip Japan and Europe as an oil importer. It
seeks to double its capacity to generate electricity in the
next 7 years and relies primarily on domestically produced
coal, whose ash content is double that of American coal and
emits far more nitrogen oxide, an element in smog, and carbon
monoxide, a poisonous gas.
This means, Mr. Chairman, that India will be one of the
world's largest producers of greenhouse gas emissions. So its
decision to rely in part on clean and efficient nuclear energy
positively affects our own environmental future, not just
This initiative has important nonproliferation benefits,
and my colleague John Rood will address these in greater
detail. I would note, however, India's strong nonproliferation
record and enhanced nonproliferation commitments under this
initiative, outlined in the 2005 joint statement and reiterated
by Foreign Minister Mukherjee in his statement of September 5.
These include continuation of India's moratorium on nuclear
testing, separation of its civilian and military nuclear
facilities and programs, and harmonization and adherence to
MTCR and NSG guidelines. India has made other nonproliferation
commitments and taken actions summarized in the President's
package of determinations under the Hyde Act.
Finally, Mr. Chairman, this initiative has economic
benefits that will accrue to both India and the United States.
The civil nuclear initiative enjoys strong support from U.S.
industry, and India's ambitious nuclear energy plans
demonstrate why. Indian officials indicate they plan to import
at least 8 new 1,000-megawatt power reactors by the year 2012
and additional reactors in the years ahead.
Preliminary private studies suggest that even just two of
these reactor contracts for U.S. firms would add 3,000 to 5,000
new direct jobs and about 10,000 to 15,000 indirect jobs in the
United States. So I would call your attention to the strong
commercial letter of intent we negotiated with India, which has
been strongly endorsed by key U.S. firms.
These, Mr. Chairman, are the key benefits of the
initiative, and we believe they are compelling. So let me
briefly address the question of why now? Because we believe the
time is now for Congress to move forward on the 123 Agreement.
First, as you mentioned in your opening statement, Mr.
Chairman, we need to capitalize on the positive momentum in our
relations. For 60 years, United States-India relations have
gone through recurring cycles of euphoria and disappointment,
ups and downs, highs and lows. Now we are on an upward swing,
and so we need to capture that momentum, locking in the very
significant gains that have been achieved in recent years.
Second, we need to establish a platform on which the next
administrations in both countries can build. The United States
goes to the polls in 7 weeks. India must hold an election
within 6 months of that. So as both countries prepare for
elections, it is important to remember, as I said at the
outset, that the transformation of United States-India
relations began when both countries were governed by different
The Clinton and Vajpayee administrations established the
platform on which the Bush and Singh administrations have
built. Just as our predecessors built the positive legacy on
which this civil nuclear initiative builds, it is important
that we leave the next American President and Indian Prime
Minister a platform on which they, in turn, can build.
Finally, Mr. Chairman, let me say something about the
package you have before you. We believe it is a strong package
based on solid Presidential determinations and consistent with
the requirements Congress laid out for us in the Hyde Act.
Indeed, I want to assure you, Mr. Chairman, and also the
Congress, that the United States sought a Nuclear Suppliers
Group exception for India consistent with the Hyde Act and at
the same time capable of commanding a consensus within the
The Hyde Act does not require incorporation of its specific
terms and restrictions in the NSG exception, but we pursued the
NSG exception with a careful eye to Hyde. And the result is an
NSG exception that contains no provision inconsistent with the
Hyde Act and that takes account of its terms and restrictions.
I know there are many technical questions, both about the
exception and the President's determinations, and Under
Secretary Rood is prepared to address these in greater detail.
But I did want to speak to some of those we have heard most
In our consultations with members and staff, these
questions have arisen repeatedly. First, we have been asked
what would happen if India conducts a nuclear weapons test? And
the short answer is that while India maintains a sovereign
right to test, we most certainly maintain a sovereign right to
We believe the Indian Government intends to uphold the
continuation of the test moratorium it committed to in 2005 and
reiterated in its September 5 statement. We also believe India
will uphold its safeguards agreement with the IAEA.
But Secretary Rice has noted clearly that we reserve the
right to take appropriate action should India, nonetheless,
resume nuclear testing. And as she told Congress on April 5,
2006, ``We have been very clear with the Indians. Should India
test, as it has agreed not to do, or should India in any way
violate the IAEA safeguards agreements to which it would be
adhering, the deal, from our point of view, would, at that
point, be off.''
Second, we have been asked why we did not support an
automatic termination provision in the NSG. We could not
support proposals to automatically terminate the exception if
India tests because the Atomic Energy Act gives the President
the statutory authority to waive restrictions if terminating
cooperation would be ``seriously prejudicial to the achievement
of U.S. nonproliferation objectives or otherwise jeopardize the
common defense and security.'' To do so would have tied the
hands of this and every President to exercise their authority
under the Act.
Third, we have been asked about enrichment and reprocessing
technology. The Hyde Act does not allow for U.S. transfer to
India of such technology, except in very narrowly limited
circumstances. The administration continues to pursue, within
the NSG, limitations on such transfers based on appropriate
I know John Rood will also speak to these issues, and so,
Mr. Chairman, let me just conclude with this. We look to the
rise of India as an opportunity not just to share the benefits
of the international system, but also the burdens and
responsibilities of maintaining, strengthening, and defending
it. Two administrations in both countries have sought to
embrace that opportunity. We believe this initiative helps to
do so and, thus, that it will shape the 21st century for the
Thank you very much.
[The prepared statement of Ambassador Burns follows:]
Prepared Statement of Hon. William J. Burns, Under Secretary of State
for Political Affairs, Department of State, Washington, DC
Mr. Chairman, Senator Lugar, distinguished members of the
committee, thank you for inviting my colleague, Acting Under Secretary
for Arms Control and International Security John Rood, and me to
discuss the U.S.-India Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative and recent
submission of the ``Agreement for Cooperation Between the Government of
the United States of America and the Government of India Concerning
Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy'' (123 Agreement) to the Congress for
In 2005, President Bush and Indian Prime Minster Manmohan Singh
sought to fundamentally transform the nature of the U.S.-India
relationship. Our two countries have had uneven relations over the past
50 years. We have worked together in selected areas, such as sparking a
new ``Green Revolution'' in India, but that cooperation never
translated into a broad-based strategic partnership.
In hindsight, this estrangement seems curious. Our broad
similarities as multireligious, multiethnic democracies should have
made us partners. But in the cold-war era, India was a leader of the
nonaligned movement while the United States and its Western partners
focused on building partnerships and international structures to
address the overarching geopolitical competition.
President Clinton began the transformation in our relationship with
India in the 1990s. He told the Indian Parliament in 2000 that we were
``natural allies, two nations conceived in liberty, each finding
strength in its diversity, each seeing in the other a reflection of its
own aspiration for a more humane and just world.'' President Bush and
Prime Minister Singh have now taken our relationship to the next level.
In March 2006, they announced joint ventures in 18 different fields,
including education, science and technology, agriculture, and defense.
Mr. Chairman, my colleague and I are here today to ask the Senate for
its support in solidifying our cooperation with India in the civil
nuclear field--the signature, strategic effort that Congress and the
administration have undertaken with India since 2005. By addressing,
and thus surmounting, the principal obstacle that has, for decades,
stood in the way of better relations, the nuclear agreement is not only
important on its own terms but has moved our relations farther and
faster forward than any other step.
India's emergence on the global scene is both inevitable and
positive. By 2025, India will most likely rank among the world's five
largest economies. India will soon be the world's most populous nation,
and it will soon have the largest and fastest growing middle class in
India's Armed Forces, like ours, are committed to the principle of
civilian control. India is a democracy--and a very successful one that
has defied the expectations of so many who believed the country was too
diverse to succeed. We believe India will support a peaceful balance of
power in Asia. In short, India is an emerging major power whose society
is open, transparent, democratic, and stable. Its government counts
diversity as an abiding strength and values and protects the rule of
law. India's political transitions, like ours, are marked by popular
discourse and elections. India is a role model in the international
Establishing and strengthening our strategic partnership with India
has been a key foreign policy priority for the administration, as it
was for our predecessor and, as I suspect, it will be for our
successor. No wonder, then, that this relationship and the Civil
Nuclear Cooperation Initiative have received such broad, bipartisan
support from the Congress.
Meanwhile, the American people and the private sector have outpaced
government interactions and already are pulling our two countries
closer together. Today there are nearly 3 million Indian-Americans in
the United States, over 80,000 Indian students enrolled in U.S.
colleges and universities, while tens of thousands of American citizens
are living and working in India. India has become one of our fastest
growing export markets and bilateral trade continues to expand,
doubling over the past 3 years to top $42 billion in 2007. Indeed, U.S.
goods and service exports to India were up 75 percent last year alone,
cutting our trade deficit with India by 42 percent. We also are
continuing to work closely with India to help further open its markets
and improve its investment climate. Two-way investment already is
rapidly rising and in 2007 Indian investment in the United States
passed $2 billion. India has been a valuable partner in the fight
against terrorism and disease, drugs and proliferation. These global
scourges present particular challenges for South Asia and India's
leadership on these issues has made it a force for stability in a
Mr. Chairman, relations between the United States and India are
strong, but we are on the cusp of something greater. As both the United
States and India approach elections, we believe this Congress now has
the opportunity to lay a foundation that will allow successor
governments in both countries to take U.S.-India relations to the next
level. Congress can do this by making civil nuclear cooperation between
our two countries a reality. With the approval of India's safeguards
agreement by the International Atomic Energy Agency Board of Governors,
and an exception authorizing nuclear trade with India approved by the
Nuclear Suppliers Group, congressional ratification of the 123
Agreement is the final step in bringing this multiyear effort to
We fully appreciate the extraordinary nature of the timeframe
within which we are asking the Congress to consider this initiative.
The questions that this initiative raises are important to our national
security, to the future of our relationship with an emerging major
power, and to nonproliferation worldwide. We owe you our thanks as we
ask for your forbearance. We would not be asking for such exceptional
consideration if we did not believe it was absolutely necessary to
complete an initiative on which both the administration and Congress
have worked so hard since 2005.
If we act together now, we can be certain that the government in
New Delhi will support the full realization of the 123 Agreement and
civil nuclear cooperation with the United States. Just as we will soon
undergo a political transition, so too, will India next spring. I
believe it is very important that we seize upon the momentum we have
now, with partners that are devoted to fulfilling the terms of a
Mr. Chairman, we believe that moving forward on the U.S.-India
Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative also will help advance other areas
in the U.S.-India relationship. It will facilitate and expand ongoing
cooperation in agriculture, science and technology, defense, and joint
democracy endeavors. The Initiative also offers far-reaching economic,
environmental, and security benefits.
India's rapidly expanding economy, coupled with its population
growth, has created an enormous demand for energy. After averaging just
3.2 percent growth between 1950-80 under a heavily state-controlled
economy, reforms in the 1980s and 1990s boosted India's annual growth
rate to around 6 percent a year over the past 20 years. In the past 4
years, India has averaged growth of 8.9 percent. Indian companies are
world leaders in information technology, pharmaceuticals, steel, and
many other industries. To continue its rapid economic expansion, India
urgently requires new sources of power generation. India already
suffers from a significant electricity shortage which shows no sign of
easing. Between 1980 and 2001, demand in India increased by 208 percent
making it one of the largest energy consumers in the world. By
contrast, China, often thought of as the next big energy consumer, saw
a 130-percent increase over the same period. India is struggling to
keep up with its energy demands, with many urban areas currently
subject to unscheduled blackouts and routine daily interruptions of
power. These shortages are expected to become more severe--thus
preventing India's growing industries from functioning effectively.
Such unreliability is detrimental to India's economic growth and a
deterrent to foreign investment.
Various studies project that India's demand for electricity will
continue to increase dramatically over the next 15 years. Expanding
India's access to nuclear power--a clean, viable alternative to fossil
fuels--is a partial answer to this important problem. The Indian
Government has announced plans to expand its nuclear sector in the
coming years to satisfy up to 20 percent of its demand for energy.
Nuclear energy currently accounts for only 3 percent of India's power
generation. To put this in perspective, even the United States, which
has historically limited nuclear energy use, derives over 20 percent of
its power from nuclear energy. Japan derives 30 percent, Switzerland
nearly 40 percent, and France roughly 85 percent.
For the people of rural India, where only 55 percent of households
even have access to electricity, the reality of a reliable,
uninterrupted source of electricity will improve quality of life for
millions, promote economic development, and help to stabilize spiraling
Civil nuclear cooperation with India also could have significant
environmental benefits since nuclear energy does not emit greenhouse
gases. Between 1990 and 2001 India's carbon emissions increased by 61
percent; a rate of growth surpassed only by China. Extrapolating from
these trends, scientists expect that this will only get worse. Between
2001 and 2025, scientists predict that India's carbon emissions will
grow by 3 percent annually, twice the United States predicted emissions
growth. Power plants are the main source of Indian carbon dioxide
emissions. These high emissions, coupled with emissions from other
sources, have made all four of India's largest cities--New Delhi,
Mumbai, Chennai, and Kolkata--among the most polluted in the world.
Nuclear energy in India would be an important alternative to the
carbon-based fossil fuels that are currently used to produce the vast
majority of India's electricity today. This would create cleaner air
and a healthier environment while making an important contribution to
halting global warming. Indian officials have projected that civil
nuclear cooperation could lead to the import of up to 40 gigawatts of
new power generation capacity by 2020. A program even half that
ambitious would reduce India's carbon output by 150 million tons
annually. This is equivalent to half the total carbon dioxide output of
For the United States, the Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative
will open up trade and investment opportunities for U.S. firms in the
multibillion dollar Indian nuclear energy sector for the first time in
over three decades. Meeting India's demand for civilian nuclear
technology, fuel, and support services holds the promise of substantial
new business for the American nuclear industry, which will translate
into new jobs and export income for the United States. A number of
private studies of the Initiative's economic impact estimate that the
award of new contracts to American nuclear firms will result in the
creation of thousands of new jobs.
Civil nuclear cooperation also will have an impact far beyond the
nuclear energy sector. By unlocking trade in civil nuclear technology,
we will help unlock a broader and deeper relationship, which would
result in increased trade in many other areas of cutting edge
technology, such as space, biotechnology, and dual-use high
technology--all of which are critical to India's economic growth and
development. This initiative is a key element of our growing
partnership with India: It helps make possible significant achievements
in many other areas of cooperation. By including civil nuclear
cooperation in our broad spectrum of collaborative activities, the
rewards of a U.S.-India partnership can truly reach every Indian and
American, from farmer to physicist.
We expect that the success of the U.S. nuclear industry in the
Indian market will flow from the high quality of the products and
services they provide. Without approval and implementation of the 123
Agreement, however, U.S. nuclear firms will be precluded from competing
in this important new global market. Reflective of our new relationship
with India, the Indian Government has publicly stated its intention to
work with U.S. nuclear firms. But international competition will,
inevitably, be intense and we want to avoid exposing U.S. firms to any
The administration has taken a number of steps to ensure the U.S.
nuclear industry will not suffer any competitive disadvantages during
the 123 Agreement review process. The Indian Government has provided
the United States with a strong Letter of Intent, stating its intention
to purchase reactors with at least 10,000 megawatts (MW) worth of new
power generation capacity from U.S. firms. India has committed to
devote at least two sites to U.S. firms. India also has committed to
adhere to the Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear
Damage. Adherence to this international liability regime by the Indian
Government is an important step in ensuring U.S. nuclear firms are
competing on a level playing field with other international
competitors. The expansion of U.S. nuclear firms into India's growing
market will provide a boost for our revitalized domestic nuclear
industry. Cooperation also will provide the United States with an
important new partner in conducting advanced research and development
of nuclear technology as we strive to develop new sustainable sources
Finally, the Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative advances U.S.
nonproliferation goals by bringing India, a state with expertise in the
full nuclear fuel cycle, closer to the global nonproliferation
mainstream. My colleague, Acting Under Secretary John Rood, will
discuss in detail India's specific nonproliferation commitments and the
actions it has taken consistent with the 2005 Joint Statement and the
Hyde Act. However, I would like to provide an overview for the
committee of the real nonproliferation benefits the Initiative provides
in advancing the fight against the spread of weapons of mass
destruction and their delivery systems.
The Initiative has been predicated on the notion that the global
nonproliferation regime is strengthened by drawing India closer, rather
than leaving it on the outside. The reality for decades has been that
India possesses nuclear weapons and has no plans to sign the Nuclear
Non-Proliferation Treaty in the foreseeable future. The Initiative
takes a pragmatic approach to dealing with this situation.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Mohamed
ElBaradei has endorsed this view and welcomed the Initiative noting,
``Out-of-the-box thinking and active participation by all members of
the international community are important if we are to advance nuclear
arms control, nonproliferation, safety and security, and tackle new
threats such as illicit trafficking in sensitive nuclear technology and
the risks of nuclear terrorism.''
Through the Initiative with the United States, India has committed
itself to follow the same practices as responsible nations with
advanced nuclear technology. It has agreed to participate in
cooperative efforts to deal with the challenges posed by the
proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery
systems. In particular, in the July 2005 Joint Statement, India made a
number of important nonproliferation commitments, including to:
Identify and separate its civil and military nuclear
facilities and programs.
Place all current and future civil nuclear facilities under
IAEA safeguards--in perpetuity. Under India's separation plan,
65 percent of India's current nuclear power generation would be
placed under safeguards and opened to IAEA inspection by 2014.
This proportion could rise to as high as 80 percent in future
years as new reactors are built and imported by India. Without
the Initiative, India's nuclear infrastructure would remain
opaque and operate substantially outside safeguards.
Negotiate and sign an Additional Protocol with the IAEA.
While India already has a solid nuclear nonproliferation
record, conclusion of an Additional Protocol would give the
IAEA expanded rights to access information about the full range
of India's civil nuclear fuel cycle, providing even more
Implement a robust national export control system. India's
harmonization with and adherence to the Missile Technology
Control Regime (MTCR) and the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG)
Annexes and Guidelines will help ensure unlawful transfers of
sensitive nuclear- and missile-related technologies do not take
Work with the United States to conclude a multilateral
Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT). India has expressed
support for moving forward on FMCT negotiations in the
Conference on Disarmament.
Refrain from transfers of enrichment and reprocessing
technologies to states that do not already possess them and
support efforts to limit their spread. India's commitment will
support President Bush's initiative to avoid the spread of the
technologies of greatest concern from the standpoint of nuclear
weapons development. India also has expressed support for
efforts to develop international fuel banks as an incentive for
states to not pursue such technologies.
Committed to continuing its moratorium on nuclear testing.
This policy was publicly reaffirmed by Indian Foreign Minister
Mukherjee on September 5 and contributes significantly to
enhancing stability in a volatile region.
In addition to these commitments, India has played a constructive
role in dealing with some of today's most pressing nonproliferation
challenges, including voting twice with the United States to refer Iran
to the U.N. Security Council. We believe successful implementation of
the Initiative will presage further and closer cooperation between
India, the United States, and its allies on current and future
India has proven itself a responsible actor with respect to the
export of sensitive nuclear technologies. Based on its sound record on
onward proliferation, its enhanced nonproliferation commitments, and
its clear and expansive energy needs, India presents a unique case for
civil nuclear cooperation. This reality has been recognized by the
international nonproliferation community as reflected in the unanimous
approval of India's safeguards agreement by the IAEA Board of Governors
in July 2008 and the consensus approval earlier this month by the
Nuclear Suppliers Group of an exception to authorize members to engage
in civil nuclear trade with India.
President Bush and Prime Minister Singh have demonstrated a
commitment to transforming the strategic relationship between our two
nations. Approval of the 123 Agreement with India would surmount a
longstanding obstacle in our relations and pave the way for the United
States and India to address as partners the global security, economic,
and environmental challenges of the 21st century. With your support, we
hope this Congress will take this critical action to make the historic
vision of closer U.S.-India cooperation a reality.
Senator Dodd. Thank you very much, Mr. Secretary.
I note we have been joined by our colleagues Senator Kerry,
Senator Boxer, and Senator Webb. We thank all three of them for
Let me turn to you, Mr. Rood, if I can. I want to also note
the presence of Director Richard Stratford, who is the director
of the Office of Nuclear Energy, Safety, and Security Affairs
in the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation,
Department of State. We welcome you as well.
And John Rood is the Acting Under Secretary for Arms
Control and International Security, at the Department of State,
and we welcome your testimony.
STATEMENT OF HON. JOHN G. ROOD, ACTING UNDER SECRETARY FOR ARMS
CONTROL AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY; ACCOMPANIED BY RICHARD J.K.
STRATFORD, DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF NUCLEAR ENERGY, SAFETY, AND
SECURITY AFFAIRS, BUREAU OF INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AND
NONPROLIFERATION, DEPARTMENT OF STATE, WASHINGTON, DC
Mr. Rood. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you for the
opportunity to testify today in support of the United States-
India Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative.
As you know, the President recently submitted a package of
documents to the Congress with the determinations required by
the Hyde Act. The administration believes this package meets
the criteria established by Congress in the 2006 Hyde Act. We,
therefore, urge the Congress to act this session to bring into
force the United States-India Agreement for Peaceful Nuclear
Cooperation, or so-called 123 Agreement since it is concluded
pursuant to section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954.
The United States-India Civil Nuclear Cooperation
Initiative provides substantial political, economic,
nonproliferation, and security benefits. I will focus on the
nonproliferation and security benefits of this initiative in my
Since the outset of the initiative, we have sought to build
a strategic partnership with India and to advance our
nonproliferation objectives by bringing India into the
international nonproliferation mainstream. In the July 18,
2005, joint statement by President Bush and Prime Minister
Singh, India made a number of important nonproliferation
commitments. Many of these commitments were incorporated into
the Hyde Act. They were reiterated as well by India's Minister
of External Affairs, Mr. Mukherjee, in a statement on September
These important nonproliferation commitments provide a
foundation upon which we have continued to build over the last
3 years with the completion of India's separation plan, the 123
Agreement, the India IAEA safeguards agreement, and most
recently the Nuclear Suppliers Group decision to allow for
civilian nuclear trade with India.
Mr. Chairman, allow me to address some of the issues that
have been raised during briefings for the committee staff by
administration officials. Regarding India's May 2006 separation
plan, we believe its implementation will produce a significant
nonproliferation gain. Once implemented, the percentage of
India's total installed nuclear power capacity under IAEA
safeguards will increase from 19 percent today to 65 percent by
A further increase up to 80 percent, or perhaps even
higher, is possible if India expands its civil nuclear
infrastructure through foreign supply and indigenous
development as it currently plans.
The nonproliferation implications of placing such
facilities under IAEA safeguards are clear. Every existing or
new facility placed under safeguards will be designated as a
civilian facility and will not be available to potentially
contribute to India's nuclear weapons program. Furthermore, the
civil nuclear cooperation initiative creates an incentive for
India to declare as many facilities as possible as civil in
order to enjoy the benefits of international cooperation.
India's safeguards agreement with the International Atomic
Energy Agency, or IAEA, provides for effective safeguards on
Indian facilities and material. As IAEA Director General
Mohamed ElBaradei said in speaking to the IAEA Board of
Governors, ``The agreement is of indefinite duration. There are
no conditions for the discontinuation of safeguards other than
those provided by the safeguards agreement itself.''
In addition, once concluded, the additional protocol will
provide additional nonproliferation benefits and greater
monitoring of materials, equipment, and technology. IAEA
Director General ElBaradei reports that the IAEA and India are
making substantial progress on an additional protocol, and we
continue to urge a speedy and successful conclusion to these
Beyond the safeguards agreement and the additional
protocol, India has made strong progress in the area of export
controls. India is taking the necessary steps to secure nuclear
and other sensitive materials and technology, including through
the enactment and enforcement of comprehensive export control
legislation and regulations as well as harmonization of its
export control laws, regulations, policies, and practices with
the guidelines and practices of the Missile Control Technology
Regime and the Nuclear Suppliers Group, as it committed to do
in the July 2005 joint statement.
Let me also address some aspects of the recently approved
Nuclear Suppliers Group statement on civil nuclear cooperation
with India. This statement creates the exception that permits
international civil nuclear trade with India by NSG members. An
initial U.S. draft text was first discussed at an NSG meeting
on August 21 and 22 of this year. NSG participating governments
met again from September 4 through 6, and after intensive
discussions, the NSG reached consensus on September 6 to allow
for civil nuclear cooperation with India.
Let me be clear, Mr. Chairman, that during these
negotiations no side deals were made by the United States to
achieve consensus at the Nuclear Suppliers Group. We achieved
consensus because there was a strong desire among participating
governments to find a way to enable civil nuclear cooperation
trade with India while reinforcing the global nonproliferation
regime. We were able to do both.
The text of the statement adopted by the NSG is fully
consistent with the Hyde Act. The same Indian nonproliferation
commitments made in the July 2005 joint statement between the
President and Prime Minister Singh, which were also
incorporated in the Hyde Act, are included in the NSG
statement. In fact, the NSG explicitly granted the exception to
allow for nuclear trade with India based on the commitments and
actions by India.
The exception provides for ongoing dialogue and cooperation
between the NSG and India through outreach by the NSG chairman
and permits the NSG to periodically consider implementation of
the exception and hold consultations on any issues or
circumstances of concern.
India's voluntary unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing
is important. We have been very clear on this with the Indian
Government. Just as India has maintained its sovereign right to
conduct a nuclear test, so, too, have we maintained our right
to take action in response.
As Secretary Rice said before this committee in April 2006,
and I quote, ``We have been very clear with the Indians. Should
India test, as it has agreed not to do, or should India in any
way violate the IAEA safeguards agreements to which it would be
adhering, the deal, from our point of view, would be, at that
In this 123 Agreement, for example, either party has the
right to terminate the agreement and seek the return of any
transferred materials and technology if it determines that
circumstances demand such action. Likewise, the NSG exception
permits any participating government, including the U.S., to
request a meeting of the group to consider actions if
circumstances have arisen which require consultations.
Mr. Chairman, we believe this initiative will have a
lasting strategic impact in building a new strategic
partnership with India, reducing India's dependency on fossil
fuels and resulting greenhouse gas emissions. It will help lift
millions of Indian citizens out of poverty while, at the same
time, strengthening the nuclear nonproliferation regime.
So, in conclusion, Mr. Chairman, Senator Lugar, and other
Senators on the committee, I thank you for the opportunity to
testify before you today.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Rood follows:]
Prepared Statement of Hon. John C. Rood, Acting Under Secretary of
State for Arms Control and International Security, Department of State,
Mr. Chairman, thank you for the opportunity to testify in support
of the U.S.-India Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative.
As you know, the President recently submitted a package of
documents to the Congress with the determinations required by the Hyde
Act. The administration believes this package meets the criteria
established by the Congress in 2006 in the Hyde Act. We therefore urge
the Congress to act this session to bring into force the U.S.-India
Agreement for Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation or so-called 123 Agreement,
pursuant to section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended.
The U.S.-India Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative provides
substantial political, economic, nonproliferation, and security
benefits. I will focus on the nonproliferation and security aspects of
the Initiative in my remarks.
Since the outset of this Initiative, we have sought to build a
strategic partnership with India, and to advance our nonproliferation
objectives by bringing India into the international nonproliferation
mainstream. In the July 18, 2005, Joint Statement by President Bush and
Prime Minister Singh, India made a number of important nonproliferation
commitments. Many of these commitments were incorporated into the Hyde
Act. They were reiterated by India's External Affairs Minister
Mukherjee in a statement on September 5, 2008.
These important nonproliferation commitments provide a foundation
upon which we have continued to build over the past 3 years with the
completion of India's Separation Plan, the 123 Agreement, the India-
IAEA Safeguards Agreement, and, most recently, the Nuclear Suppliers
Group decision to allow civilian nuclear trade with India.
Mr. Chairman, allow me to address some of the issues that have been
raised during briefings for the committee staff by administration
Regarding India's May 2006 Separation Plan, we believe its
implementation will produce a significant nonproliferation gain. Once
implemented, the percentage of India's total installed nuclear power
capacity under IAEA safeguards will increase from 19 percent today to
65 percent by 2014. A further increase up to 80 percent is possible if
India expands its civil nuclear infrastructure through foreign supply
and indigenous development as it currently plans.
The nonproliferation implications of placing such facilities under
IAEA safeguards are clear. Every existing or new facility placed under
safeguards will be designated as a civilian facility and will not be
available to potentially contribute to India's nuclear weapons program.
Furthermore, the Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative creates an
incentive for India to declare as many facilities as possible as
``civil'' in order to enjoy the benefits of international cooperation.
India's Safeguards Agreement with the International Atomic Energy
Agency (IAEA) provides for effective safeguards on Indian facilities
and material. As IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei told the IAEA
Board of Governors ``. . . the agreement is of indefinite duration.
There are no conditions for the discontinuation of safeguards, other
than those provided by the safeguards agreement itself.'' In addition,
once concluded, an Additional Protocol, will provide additional
nonproliferation benefits and greater monitoring of materials,
equipment, and technologies. IAEA Director General ElBaradei reports
that the IAEA and India are making substantial progress on an
Additional Protocol and we continue to urge a speedy and successful
conclusion to these negotiations.
Beyond the Safeguards Agreement and the Additional Protocol, India
has made strong progress in the areas of export controls. India is
taking the necessary steps to secure nuclear and other sensitive
materials and technology, including through the enactment and effective
enforcement of comprehensive export control legislation and
regulations, as well as harmonization of its export control laws,
regulations, policies, and practices with the guidelines and practices
of the Missile Technology Control Regime and the Nuclear Suppliers
Group, as it committed to do in the July 2005 Joint Statement.
Let me also address some aspects of the recently approved Nuclear
Suppliers Group Statement on Civil Nuclear Cooperation with India. This
statement creates the exception that permits international civil
nuclear trade with India by NSG members. An initial U.S. draft
exception text was first discussed at an NSG meeting on August 21-22.
NSG Participating Governments met again from September 4-6, and after
intensive discussions, the NSG reached consensus on September 6 to
allow for civil nuclear cooperation with India.
Let me be clear that during these negotiations no side deals were
made by the United States to achieve consensus at the Nuclear Suppliers
Group. We achieved consensus because there was a strong desire among
Participating Governments to find a way to enable civil nuclear trade
with India while reinforcing the global nonproliferation regime. We
were able to do both.
The text of the statement adopted by the NSG is fully consistent
with the Hyde Act. The same Indian nonproliferation commitments made in
the July 2005 Joint Statement between President Bush and Prime Minister
Singh, which were also incorporated in the Hyde Act, are included in
the NSG statement. In fact, the NSG explicitly granted the exception
based on these commitments and actions by India. The exception provides
for ongoing dialogue and cooperation between the NSG and India through
outreach by the NSG chairman and permits the NSG to periodically
consider implementation of the exception and hold consultations to
address any circumstances of concern.
India's voluntary, unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing is
important. We have been very clear on this subject with the Indian
Government. Just as India has maintained its sovereign right to conduct
a test, so too have we maintained our right to take action in response.
As Secretary Rice said before this committee in April 2006, ``We've
been very clear with the Indians--should India test, as it has agreed
not to do, or should India in any way violate the IAEA safeguards
agreements to which it would be adhering, the deal, from our point of
view, would at that point be off.'' In the 123 Agreement, for example,
either party has the right to terminate the agreement and seek the
return of any transferred materials and technology if it determines
that circumstances demand such action. Likewise, the NSG exception
permits any Participating Government, including the United States, to
request a meeting of the group to consider actions if ``circumstances
have arisen which require consultations.''
Mr. Chairman, we believe that this Initiative will have a lasting
strategic impact in building a new strategic partnership with India,
reducing India's dependency on fossil fuels and resulting greenhouse
gas emissions, and will help lift millions of Indian citizens out of
poverty, while at the same time strengthening the nuclear
Mr. Chairman, thank you again for the opportunity to testify today.
I look forward to answering your questions.
Senator Dodd. Thank you very, very much.
And let me ask the Clerk to put an 8- or 9-minute clock on
here, and I won't bang down the gavel. There are a lot of very
important questions I know colleagues have, as Senator Lugar
has already pointed out, and we will try to adhere to that time
if we can.
Let me begin with sort of the practical questions, if I
can, Secretary Burns. What does the administration want
Congress to do?
Secretary Burns. Our hope, Mr. Chairman, is that the
Congress will be able to move in this session to approve the
Senator Dodd. Well, in that regard, that requires certain
waivers. So you are asking the Congress to waive the 30-day
requirement under the Atomic Energy Act legislation. Is that
Secretary Burns. Yes.
Senator Dodd. Are you willing to accept the fact that there
are rumors that the administration may just try and put this
agreement without any further consideration by the committee as
part of a continuing resolution, or would you prefer, as we
hope you will, a product that was worked on by this committee
and by the bicameral, bipartisan process here to produce
something that would pass muster here? Which is your
Secretary Burns. Our preference is certainly to work with
the committee and work with the Congress toward an approval
that all of us support.
Senator Dodd. Because I know there are members here and
there are others in the other body who have expressed some
reservations about this. And I want to know at the outset,
while we have a truncated amount of time, whether or not the
administration is prepared to work with us to try and resolve
some of those matters, if at all possible, as we move forward.
Secretary Burns. Yes, sir.
Senator Dodd. Let me, if I can, move to another line of
questioning, a series of questions. And after that, I will turn
to Senator Lugar. I have additional ones beyond this, but these
may require some time for you to respond to them.
It has to do with the fuel assurances and the United
States-India agreement. In the article 5, section 6 of the
agreement with India repeats President Bush's March 2006 fuel
assurances. Let me remind my colleagues and others what these
promises include: To support an Indian effort to develop a
strategic reserve of nuclear fuel to guard against any
distribution of supply over the lifetime of India's reactors.
And if a fuel disruption occurs, to convene a group of friendly
supplier countries to pursue such measures as would restore
fuel supply to India.
Article 2, section 2 of the agreement adds that the scope
of cooperation under the agreement may include the development
of that strategic reserve. These promises could give the
appearance of undercutting U.S. actions under the Atomic Energy
Act if India were to conduct a nuclear test.
So let me ask you, and I think Senator Lugar referred to
some of these already in his opening comments, let me ask
several of them here and ask you to respond and come back. What
is the legal effect of including these assurances in the
agreement? If those assurances have no legal effect, then why
are they included in the agreement at all?
What will the United States do to help India create its
strategic reserve of nuclear fuel? Does the Government of India
agree that those assurances are not legally binding? And if so,
has it said so in public? And if the assurances are only a
political commitment, which is what was raised, again, by
Senator Lugar, what does that political commitment mean?
Would you address those issues?
Secretary Burns. Sure. I will start, and then I am sure
John Rood will want to add a little bit. First, the commitments
that the President made that are recorded in the 123 Agreement
are firm, solemn commitments on the part of the President----
Senator Dodd. Are they legal commitments, or are they
Secretary Burns. As we made clear, the President made clear
in the transmittal letter, they are political commitments.
Senator Dodd. Are they binding on additional
administrations, come January 20?
Secretary Burns. They are a political commitment, sir, in
the sense that we are determined to help India to try to ensure
a reasonable, steady supply of fuel. And should disruptions
arise, for example, trade disputes, a commercial firm fails to
meet its requirements, then we are firmly determined to do
everything we can to help in that instance.
But we are determined to meet those commitments to the
fullest extent consistent with U.S. law. And so, any President
would be bound by U.S. law, just as you have described, and I
believe that the Indians understand the clarity of our
Senator Dodd. Have they taken a public position reflecting
those assurances that you are aware of?
Secretary Burns. With regard to their understanding that
our actions are going to be guided by U.S. law and will be
consistent with U.S. law, I believe the Indians do understand
Senator Dodd. Forgive me if I am maybe asking a naive
question here, but a political commitment and a legally binding
commitment, there are those of us here that are having some
difficulty understanding the distinction. These are political
commitments. To what extent are they legally binding?
Mr. Rood. The President has made political commitments,
Senator, in his statements and in the agreements that we have
struck with the India Government.
Senator Dodd. I understand that.
Mr. Rood. And so, the 123 Agreement provides a legal
framework. It is an enabling piece of agreement, which allows
for cooperation to occur. It does not compel American firms,
for instance, to sell a given product to India.
And so, in some of the scenarios that were mentioned, some
of the opening statements, such as a nuclear test, for example,
the 123 Agreement preserves our right, as required under the
Atomic Energy Act, for the United States to terminate
cooperation and to seek the return of materials if we judge
that to be the appropriate course of action at that time.
There are separate pieces of U.S. legislation which are
amendments to the Atomic Energy Act that would contain
requirements for any future President or administration to
follow. Section 129 of the Atomic Energy Act does have a--
provides some flexibility for the President and the
administration to determine the circumstances at that time. And
should there be a determination by the President that a
cessation of cooperation would be seriously prejudicial to our
nonproliferation objectives or undermine or jeopardize our
common defense and security, then the President would have the
authority under the present statute to waive that restriction.
Senator Dodd. Well, let us assume we are able to have this
agreement come into force this year. Let me ask you the
following. Would the President, this President be obligated to
help India acquire a nuclear fuel reserve sufficient to enable
India to ride out any international sanctions as a result of a
nuclear test? Would he be required to do that, legally required
to do that under this agreement?
Mr. Rood. What we have agreed to do is aid India in the
creation of a strategic reserve.
Senator Dodd. Is he legally required to do that under this
Mr. Rood. The President has made a commitment to do that.
The agreement, as a legal matter, is, as I say, only an
enabling piece of legislation. We in the United States
Government--for instance, it is not a Government activity to
produce nuclear fuel. It is a commercial activity in the United
States, and we in the U.S. Government could not legally compel
American firms to provide fuel to India if they did not wish to
Senator Dodd. Let me take it a step further. If India were
to buy some U.S. nuclear fuel in October, next month, and then
let us say they conducted a nuclear test in November. Would
President Bush feel obligated to help India find alternative
fuel sources to replace the supply that we would very likely
cut off pursuant to section 129 of the Atomic Energy Act? And
if not, why not?
Mr. Rood. What I would say, Senator, is that we would have
to evaluate the set of circumstances, of course, that existed
at that time. India has made a commitment, most recently
reiterated just on September 5, to maintain a unilateral
moratorium on nuclear testing. So we do not expect that India
would conduct a nuclear test.
In the hypothetical that you raise, we would evaluate the
circumstances that exist at that time. There are restrictions
embodied in the Atomic Energy Act that would require the
President to make certain determinations. If the President
determined that nuclear cooperation with India should be
terminated and, for instance, if we in the United States
Government then moved to terminate the 123 Agreement, it would
not be consistent with that spirit for us to encourage other
countries to supply nuclear fuel if the United States did not.
Senator Dodd. This is not purely hypothetical. There still
is a residue of bitterness over the Tarapur case going back.
And the reason I raise this is because I am fearful that we may
be setting ourselves up for the same reaction.
One of the arguments I made in favor of going forward,
albeit with some reservations, is from the geopolitical
perspective this is an important relationship between our two
countries. I think most of my colleagues appreciate that there
is a strategic issue involved in all of this.
But I don't want to see us setting ourselves up to
duplicate the very situation that contributed to a generation
and a half of bitterness as a result of our relationship. And I
am worried that by not being clear on this very point, raising
the specter with India of how we would act because it is only a
political commitment and not a legally binding one, that we run
the risk of engendering that same kind of bitterness that
Why shouldn't I be worried about that?
Secretary Burns. Mr. Chairman, that is a very good
question, and it is a quite legitimate concern. And certainly
in the course of negotiations over recent years there has been
a lot of concern devoted to this issue and a lot of differences
from time to time as we and our Indian colleagues have tried to
work through these issues.
One of the reasons that the distinction between legally
binding and politically binding has created such attention in
India and the Indian media today, I think, has to do with the
concern that somehow the firm Presidential commitment that has
been made to try to provide that steady supply of fuel is
undermined by what we think is an artificial distinction when
we are talking about a firm commitment.
What is very clear is that we will do everything we can to
ensure that steady supply, except in extreme circumstances. And
in those extreme circumstances, which John mentioned, when you
are talking about the kinds of things under U.S. law, whether
it is a test or an abrogation of a safeguards agreement, then
our actions will be bound by U.S. law. And I guess that is the
clearest way that I can put it.
Senator Dodd. Well, I appreciate that. Let me turn to
Senator Lugar. Mr. Chairman, just continuing to follow on
this issue for a moment. Just yesterday, an official from
India's Department of Atomic Energy was quoted in an Indian
newspaper as saying, ``It is up to the U.S. to resolve its
internal legal and political obligations, but India should be
assured of continuous fuel supply.'' The same official also
said, ``We want the U.S. to make it clear about the continuous
supply of fuel as the congressional voting is fast
Now when the Indians talk about continuous fuel supply--and
obviously, we have dwelled on this for a while--they feel this
is the heart of the agreement. First of all, I am a little bit
confused about the legal aspect, as opposed to a political
commitment. But let us say, as a practical matter, that for
some reason we decide to terminate their supply of fuel. Are we
agreeing in this 123 Agreement then to help them get fuel from
some other countries? In other words, what is the nature of our
obligation in this situation?
Mr. Rood. Senator Lugar, in the construction of the 123
Agreement, we were conscious of the history of the United
States-India relations with respect to Tarapur and other
matters. But what we have agreed to do is because of the Indian
sensitivities in this area is to help them maintain a steady
supply of fuel.
And what we have in mind are things such as, for some
reason, that there should be a market disruption, some form of
trade war, or something beyond India's control that would
interrupt their supply of nuclear fuel, which again will supply
a much larger percentage of India's overall energy and
according to the Indian Government's projections. So, based on
that, we would help in the U.S. Government. We have made a
commitment to help in that regard.
Should India take an action such as a nuclear test, we
would again turn to the Atomic Energy Act to be our guide as to
what the administration's obligations would be. And if we chose
to terminate the 123 Agreement, as you mentioned, the U.S.
would have the right to do so under the terms of the agreement.
We would have the right to seek the return, to have the return
of any equipment supplied and fuel supplied to India. And at
that point, that would be the nature of the U.S. commitments.
Now, as I mentioned, I think it would be inconsistent with
a President's decision to terminate United States supply of
fuel to then seek the supply from other countries of fuel to
Senator Lugar. Well, let me pursue another question. This
is sort of a housekeeping matter in a way. But Title II of the
Hyde Act was titled ``The U.S. Additional Protocol
Implementation Act.'' Now despite its passage 2 years ago and
despite the Senate's ratification of the agreement in March
2004, just weeks after President Bush asked the Senate to
provide advice and consent, the administration has not yet
brought our additional protocol into force.
I have sent several letters to the Secretary of State and a
letter to both State and Defense on this matter. And we have
asked many times why the situation is unchanged, only to be
told that you continue to have difficulties in achieving this
for President Bush.
Now will the U.S. additional protocol enter into force
before the end of this year or even during the remaining weeks
of the President's term in office?
Mr. Rood. Senator, with respect to the additional protocol,
of course, that is something that we are--we in the
administration continue to work to bring into force for the
United States. It is something that we at the State Department
view ourselves as the engine for within the administration,
trying to pull that matter across the finish line.
The implementation of the U.S. additional protocol, of
course, most of the activities will be accomplished by the
Departments of Energy and Departments of Defense. And so, we
continue to work very closely with our colleagues there to try
to implement that agreement. We would like to do it as soon as
practical, and it is something that, as I say, we continue to
work closely with those other departments to try to urge them
to complete the activities necessary to allow us then to bring
that agreement into force.
Senator Lugar. Well, is it a priority for this
administration? In other words, Title II of the Hyde Act is
titled ``The U.S. Additional Protocol Implementation Act,'' and
it provides you with the authority you need to complete the
ratification process. But as you say, after years, it still
hasn't been implemented. And you are trying awfully hard in the
last few days to get it done.
I am just confused as to where it is and why we have had
such a problem.
Mr. Rood. With respect to the additional protocol, of
course, as the Defense Department and Department of Energy
begin the preparations to put certain facilities under
safeguards, there are preparatory activities that they have
indicated they need to complete.
Again, we meet regularly with our colleagues. We work
closely as an administration with the other departments, from
the State Department, to try to encourage the completion of
those activities that will, therefore, enable the United States
to bring the additional protocol into force and apply
safeguards more widely in the United States.
But the issues are those of implementation, Senator, with
respect to the activities of these particular departments.
Senator Lugar. Well, I will let it rest there. This is a
pretty tedious problem for the administration. Month after
month, week after week, striving to get there and haven't quite
got there, and the question is whether you make it by the
finish line. One would not be optimistic hearing this report,
but we will leave it at that.
Hopefully, a lot of things are going to happen in a few
days, or nothing is going to happen at all. And I think you
both recognize that, and that is why you are here today, and
that is why we are here.
Well, let me ask one final thing. Article 6 of the proposed
123 Agreement says the two parties grant each other consent to
reprocess nuclear material but appears to make that consent
contingent on India establishing a dedicated facility to carry
out such reprocessing and on future agreements on arrangements
and procedures under which the reprocessing in this new
facility would take place.
Is it correct that under this provision, reprocessing of
nuclear material cannot take place unless and until the
arrangements to which it refers have been concluded? And have
these arrangements and procedures been concluded? And does the
executive branch intend to submit these arrangements and
procedures to the Congress for approval prior to their entry
into force and the commencement of reprocessing?
Mr. Rood. Senator, I believe the answers to your question
in order are yes, no, and yes. The first question, if I have
got you right, was whether the agreement would, in fact,
require India to establish a dedicated facility for
reprocessing under IAEA safeguards, and the answer to that is
On the second question, has the administration already
completed negotiations on an agreement that would contain those
practices and procedures with India, the answer is, no, we have
And the third question, would those be submitted to
Congress? And the answer is, yes, that is required under the
Atomic Energy Act.
Senator Lugar. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Dodd. Thank you very much, Senator Lugar.
Senator Kerry. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Thank you, Mr. Secretary and Mr. Rood, for being here
I was in India at the time that this agreement was first
announced, and I have been supportive of the fundamental
direction of it from that moment to this day, though I still
have some clarification issues that are of concern. But I want
to say a few things about the support for it or the fundamental
I voted for the Hyde Act in December 2006 after some
significant nonproliferation concerns were addressed because,
as you have said here today and others have said, I viewed this
as a very important way to strengthen the partnership between
the world's oldest and largest democracies.
I am inclined to support the negotiated agreement, but I
want to look for some of these clarifications despite some
lingering nonproliferation worries because of the importance of
this emerging strategic partnership between the United States
and India. And this deal will also help India meet its growing
energy needs without relying as much on technologies that are
unbelievably damaging to our environment, and that issue rises
in urgency with respect to national security concerns.
But make no mistake. I have said previously and I still
believe that this is not the best agreement that should have
initially been brought out in this negotiating process from a
nonproliferation perspective. You can't go backward. It is
where we are, and it is what we are dealing with. But I think
it is really important for all of our colleagues on this
committee to recognize the significant importance of bringing
India into the nuclear mainstream, given its longstanding
status outside the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty regime.
The bottom line is that we are better off with that than
without it. But there are legitimate questions about whether
this step will make it tougher to strengthen the global
consensus against Iran's and North Korea's nuclear activities.
That said, we can't lump India, a responsible democracy that
plays by international rules and has a strong record of
responsible stewardship of nuclear technology, in with those
countries that have either outlaw or uncooperative governments.
I hope and expect that this nuclear deal is going to open
the door for greater cooperation with India on nonproliferation
issues. Despite its own arsenal, India has long supported the
goal of a world without nuclear weapons, a dream articulated
now not only by Mahatma Gandhi, but it is shared by both of our
Presidential candidates in this race.
The new President should urge the Senate to ratify a treaty
banning nuclear weapons testing, and then encourage India and
its neighbors to sign that treaty and agree to a moratorium on
producing nuclear weapons usable material.
Ever since India's Smiling Buddha nuclear weapons test
almost 35 years ago, its nuclear program has been an enduring
obstacle to stronger United States-India friendship. So I do
believe the time has come, for a lot of different reasons, to
start a new chapter in our relations with a crucial new ally.
We can't lose sight of one thing, deal or no deal. We can't
allow this agreement to become a referendum on the future of
United States-India relations. Not when our interests and our
ties are more closely aligned than ever before. From ensuring
no single country dominates Asia, to providing a diplomatic
partner to strengthening stability and fighting extremism in a
turbulent region, to developing innovative approaches to a
planet in peril, India today matters as never before.
Like any allies, India and the United States will continue
to have differences, from India's ties with Iran to trade.
Parts of India's older generation might sometimes advocate
policies at odds with our own to preserve India's strategic
autonomy, while some younger members of left-leaning parties
may remain ideologically at odds with us.
But make no mistake. India and America will increasingly
see eye-to-eye on the issues of the 21st century. With or
without the symbolic centerpiece of a nuclear deal, India
should be among America's closest friends in the decades ahead.
And the test for American foreign policy will be to bring our
governments together to reflect the shared values, shared
threats, and ever-deepening ties between our two economies and
Now, let me turn, if I may, to those points of
clarification. Mr. Secretary, section 104(b)(1) of the Hyde Act
requires the President to certify in terms of the waiver
authority and congressional approval, and you are familiar with
it. Fairly detailed, the determination referred to is the
determination by the President the following actions have
And it is specifically that they have provided the United
States and the IAEA with a credible plan to separate civil and
military nuclear facilities, materials, and programs and has
filed a declaration regarding its civil facilities with the
IAEA. You are suggesting that the report submitted by the
President--that the separation plan actually does that.
I have that plan here. With respect to Paragraph 14 that
you referred to, I find it hard on its face to see that it
actually satisfies the credible plan for the separation. And I
am concerned that it is going to be important for us to be able
to gather the consensus here that we have an adequate
satisfaction that the agreement negotiated conforms to the Hyde
Act in that respect.
Secretary Burns. Thank you, Senator. Let me start in trying
to answer your question, and Dick Stratford may want to add to
it. It is our judgment, as reflected in the President's
determination, that the separation plan that, as you said, has
been presented to the IAEA and the United States----
Senator Kerry. Can you show me where it appears in here, in
Secretary Burns. Dick, why don't you----
Senator Kerry. In the communication dated July 25?
Mr. Stratford. Senator, the separation plan is included in
the package that was submitted by the President. And if you
turn to page 97 in the full package, you will be looking at
paragraph 14 of the separation plan.
Now I should say that the phase ``declaration'' was not
used by India until it was written into the safeguards
agreement that was just approved, but in IAEA parlance, there
is no such thing as a declaration in the context of a
safeguards agreement. It is something else.
When we took a look at the separation plan, what we find is
that it talks about how it is going to separate its civilian
and military sides of the program. Now what you want from a
declaration is what facilities specifically are you going to
put under safeguards and when. And if you go to 14, you find a
specific list of the reactors that will go under safeguards and
when, but it is an outdated list. But they are going to
maintain the end date.
In other words, they said all the reactors that would go
under safeguards would be under safeguards by 2014, and they
stand by that. If you then continue on through page 98, et
cetera, what you see is----
Senator Kerry. Well, let me interrupt you for a minute
Mr. Stratford. Sure.
Senator Kerry. I am following you. But I am not sure many
people are, and it seems to me that it would be a lot simpler
just for the President to comply and certify and give us a
single certification with an up-to-date list that answers the
question of the credible plan, that we are satisfied that the
plan is credible. That is what it has to say to us.
We shouldn't have to look at this and draw it out of you
through a series of questions. The President, under the Hyde
Act, is supposed to certify to us that, in fact, this is a
credible plan and that it is on file with the IAEA. And that is
the requirement. Why doesn't it do that?
Mr. Stratford. Because, Senator--because I think, Senator,
actually what Hyde says is that the President needs to certify
that India has filed a separation plan and a declaration with
Senator Kerry. Correct.
Mr. Stratford. What India did in, I think it was July, was
to take the separation plan, hand it to the director general
and say what we are going to put under safeguards precisely and
when is in paragraph 14 of this document, which we already
submitted to parliament. So this, in effect, would you please
So, in our judgment, that portion of the separation plan,
which they did give to the agency and ask to be circulated,
serves as the mechanism for----
Senator Kerry. That may well be, but why then, again, not
simply have the President certify India has done it, rather
than using a reference document as the certification? It is
sort of simplistic. It seems like we are going around in a
Mr. Stratford. I think we may be using different words for
the same thing. I think we----
Senator Kerry. Well, I am not sure because it may be that
there is an accountability there that comes with one thing,
which is what the Hyde Act envisions. And if you are leaving it
to someone else and some other document, you are not taking
accountability. We put it there for a purpose. We want to know
that you are certifying it, that it is a credible plan.
Mr. Stratford. Senator, I----
Senator Kerry. So I just--let me leave that with you----
Mr. Stratford. Fine. Fine.
Senator Kerry [continuing]. For consideration, and let us
see if we can work that through.
Let me ask you also, because time is about up, Prime
Minister Singh has said that India would take on ``the same
responsibilities and practices as other leading countries with
advanced nuclear technologies such as the United States.''
Specifically, India has agreed to identify and separate
civilian and military nuclear facilities, declare its civilian
programs to the IAEA, sign an additional protocol for civilian
facilities, continue its unilateral nuclear test moratorium,
work with the U.S. to sign the Fissile Material Control
Technology, refrain from transferring enrichment and reprocess
technologies, support comprehensive export control legislation,
and adherence to the Missile Technology Control Regime and NSG
Now that is all very comprehensive. It is one of the
reasons why I think this is stronger than some people may
think. But I want to make certain that you have sufficient
confidence that these nonproliferation safeguards are adequate
and enforceable and accountable.
Secretary Burns. Yes, sir; we do. And we have worked
through each of those issues very carefully with the Indians,
working closely with the IAEA, with the Nuclear Suppliers
Group. It has taken a long time. It has been a painstaking
effort, but we agree with you. This is a significant step. It
doesn't make for a perfect agreement, but it is a significant
step. And we are confident----
Senator Kerry. How do you guarantee that it is not just a
transfer of the saved fuel that now goes off into weapons and,
therefore, becomes a weapons enhancer?
Secretary Burns. Well, sir, certainly India, with or
without this initiative, has the capability to sustain its
nuclear weapons arsenal. India has made very clear to us
privately and publicly that it subscribes to the concept of a
doctrine of a credible minimum deterrent. It has made very
clear to us that it has no intention or plan of significantly
increasing its nuclear arsenal.
What it clearly does have the intention of doing is
significantly increasing its civilian nuclear capabilities. And
so, it is our judgment, as John has described before, that by
taking this step and significantly increasing the proportion of
reactors and facilities and materials that will be covered by
IAEA safeguards, that is a fairly important stride. And that it
will also increase the incentive, in our judgment, for the
Indians to focus on increasing that civilian nuclear program.
Senator Kerry. Thank you.
Mr. Chairman, I want to thank you for the extra time, and
my colleagues. I appreciate it.
I will just close by saying that the next President,
whoever it is, is going to have an enormous opportunity here, I
think, to build on this relationship in order to take advantage
of that predisposition not to engage in--and of their past
history of not expanding.
But I think there needs to be, and Senator Lugar has worked
hard on this through the years, a massive new commitment to
the, you know, the counter proliferation/testing ban/efforts. I
mean, the nuclear issue has to be much more front and center in
the next administration.
Senator Dodd. Thank you, Senator.
Senator Corker. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I appreciate your testimony and the work that you all have
done on this. I do continue along the same lines to be a little
bit confused about some of the structures that are set up to
ensure that safeguards are properly in place and there is no
Let me ask, what is the advantage, again, and why would we
go about a phased safeguard approach? I mean, I realize at the
end of the day, that there's a lot of things that are driving
this besides non-nuclear proliferation, and sort of, the tail
is wagging the dog, and we've sort of gotten what we could get,
here, I understand that.
But, what is it--why is it to their benefit to do it over a
phased amount of time?
Mr. Rood. Senator, the--during the negotiations on the
separation plan, the Indian Government wanted time to phase out
the implementation of IAEA safeguards at additional facilities
in our schedule, to allow them time to prepare, to spread out
the expense of bringing those additional facilities under
safeguards over a longer period of time. And it was just a
means by which they argued to us that they should be permitted
to implement this in a gradual manner, as opposed to a date
certain for all facilities, when those would be put.
Senator Corker. But, big expense in that? I mean, the
benefits of having these materials seems pretty large. There is
a large expense in bringing these under proper safeguards?
Mr. Rood. There's some expense required, only in that you
need to provide declarations, you need to have people trained
and have a system in place by which material is accounted for
in very small quantities and other matters are done.
We obviously favor this. I don't mean to come across as
saying this isn't a reasonable thing to ask countries to do, we
encourage them to do it, and the Indians have safeguards on
some facilities today, but this was substantially, as I
mentioned, increase the facilities placed under safeguard. So,
it's just a phased implementation toward that.
But there is an incentive, which is, until facilities are
under safeguards, international cooperation, such as the sale
of fuel to be used in a reactor, would not be possible. So,
there is a--the system encourages India to place facilities
under safeguards, earlier rather than later.
Senator Corker. Let me read a question, in 2007, the
Chairman of the Indian Atomic Energy Commission answered the
question--how will the separation of civilian and nuclear
facilities from their military counterparts affect the
organizational structure of the Department of the Atomic
Energy, by stating, ``The structure remains the same. We are
identifying specific plants as civilian, and they will be put
under safeguards. There is no need for any change in the
organizational structure. This is true in all countries--only
one government Department looks after the entire atomic energy
In response to a question posed on April 6, on the same
subject, Secretary Rice stated, ``While the specific issue of
the Department of the Atomic Energy personnel has not been
discussed in detail, we would consider routine, frequent
rotation of personnel between civil and military programs as
being inconsistent with Indian commitments on the separation of
civilian and military facilities. In our view, such a rotation
would be inconsistent with India's commitment to identify and
separate civilian and military nuclear facilities and
We have made this position clear to the Indian Government.
Since India is likely to continue a permit routine frequent
rotation of personnel between civilian and military program, is
India's separation plan credible in this area, and how can we
work with India to achieve proper separation in that regard?
Mr. Rood. With regard to India's separation plan, they've--
as I mentioned--identified the facilities and the activities
associated with those facilities that will, therefore, be under
We do have confidence that the facilities placed under IAEA
safeguards, that that will be an effective means to prevent
diversion to a noncivilian purpose.
With respect to how the Indian Government organizes itself
in order to implement that, I would note that personnel
associated with running a particular reactor program or
particular set of activities, generally are specialists in a
particular activity. And so, if they work at a safeguarded
facility that's devoted to a particular purpose, we would
expect they would continue in that regard. There will be some
obvious movement of personnel.
But IAEA safeguards on a particular facility, and those
that will be applied in India, are the type applied elsewhere
in the world, we do think are effective as a means to prevent
In addition to the IAEA safeguards, of course, the
additional protocol, which is under negotiation, will provide
additional authorities to the IAEA, and greater ability to
monitor against diversion.
Senator Corker. It seems like a pretty difficult thing to
me, to ensure, and I appreciate your explanation.
I've got to be two places at once, like we all do, most of
the time. I want to ask one last question, I have a few minutes
left, and I might not hear the complete answer, but--you know,
I'm here constantly looking for consistency in what we do, and
I am consistently disappointed.
So, I guess as we look beyond this agreement--and I know
that all of you have worked very, very hard on this--to
Pakistan, to Israel, to other folks that we have relationships
with in this regard, and then folks that we wish not to pursue
these kinds of activities. How does this, when you step back
away from the deal at hand, if you will, how does this affect
us, going forward?
Secretary Burns. Well, let me take a stab at that, Senator,
because it's a very good question.
I think, you know, what has compelled our interest in India
and driven this effort of the Civil Nuclear Initiative have
been a number of factors--first, the strategic importance of
India, but also, the fact that here you have a country whose
economy is growing very fast, whose energy needs are growing
very fast, and whose impact on the global environment can be
enormous, for better or worse. And that creates a kind of
unique challenge that the expansion of clean, civil nuclear
energy can help address.
Finally, I think you have, in the case of India, an
instance where a country that, for decades has been outside the
mainstream of the nuclear proliferation regime, has nonetheless
maintained an admirable record of ensuring that sophisticated
technology was not seeping away in the direction of other
countries or other groups.
And so it's, I think, all three of those factors that we've
tried to address in this painstaking effort to produce this
initiative, and also to produce the exception and the nuclear
suppliers group. And that was an exception that we focused on
India, not looking to set a precedent for anyone else.
Senator Corker. I yield the rest of my time. And thank you
for your testimony.
Senator Dodd. Thank you, Senator Corker.
Senator Feingold. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, this is
obviously a very important hearing, so thank you for holding
And Secretary Burns, I also appreciate your willingness to
come back to the Senate, after seeing you yesterday on Russia
Good to see you, Secretary Rood and Mr. Stratford.
When we debated the United States-India Civil Nuclear
Cooperation Agreement 2 years ago, I noted my concerns that it
would dramatically shift 30 years of nonproliferation policy.
Without question, our relationship with India is one of the
most important in the region, and in the world, and is
absolutely critical to building a secure, stable, and
prosperous global system.
But, I still am concerned that this agreement does not have
adequate protections to guard against the spread of nuclear
weapons, and nuclear technology.
After reviewing this unprecedented deal--including, once
again, the supporting classified documents, which I recommend
all of my colleagues take a look at, and after discussing this
agreement with senior Indian Government officials on a recent
trip to India--I am still concerned that this deal seriously
undermines nonproliferation efforts, and could contribute to an
arms race that would have global implications.
I think we could have crafted a deal that would have
benefited our national interests, as well as India's, but if
Congress approves this deal in its current form, I believe we
will not have done that.
In late August, the members of the Nuclear Suppliers Group
attempted--attempted--to reduce the negative impact of this
agreement on their ability to prevent the spread of sensitive
nuclear materials, but the administration succeeded in
overcoming those efforts.
Congress now has a choice--approve this deal in its
current, flawed form, or require the administration to seek
nonproliferation measures to try to ensure we don't undermine
the coalitions that we all know we've meticulously put together
over the last 30 years.
The proliferation of nuclear technology, know-how and
material is one of the top national security threats we face.
While India may share a desire to control the spread of nuclear
weapons, by undermining international standards this agreement
may actually contribute to that threat.
Now, I remain concerned that this agreement could
indirectly benefit India's nuclear weapons program, and
potentially contribute to an arms race in the region. Isn't it
true that, by opening the door to providing nuclear supplies to
India, we are freeing up local fuel supplies for India's
Secretary Burns. Senator Feingold, as I said before, I
think we're guided by a couple of different facts.
First, the Indians have made clear that they intend to
continue to subscribe to the doctrine of credible minimal
deterrent. They have made clear that they don't have any
intention of significantly increasing their nuclear arsenal,
where they clearly do have an intention is to increase their
civilian nuclear program. With or without the initiative that
we've put before you today, that you've so carefully
considered, the Indians clearly have the ability to sustain
their nuclear arsenal, and even expand it over time.
Our judgment is, that by taking this step, we're creating
an even greater incentive to focus on civil nuclear energy.
We're vastly increasing the range of facilities and materials
in India that are covered by IAEA safeguards, and in that
sense, we're making with the Indians, a positive contribution
But there's no perfect answer to your question, because
there--there does remain an Indian nuclear weapons program,
there does remain the capacity not only to sustain it, but to
expand it over time.
Senator Feingold. I understand your point, and what you
said about India's intent and India's pledge that any U.S.
assistance to its civil nuclear energy program will not benefit
its nuclear weapons program, and it's committed itself, as you
noted in your testimony, to follow the same practices as
responsible nations, to follow those practices. But how can we
be fully assured of any commitment? I mean, India had
previously claimed it was using nuclear technology for civilian
purposes, right up until the time it tested in 1974. What kind
of assurance do we have?
Secretary Burns. Well, sir, there's no perfect guarantee,
as you know, but our conviction is that by moving in this
direction, we're deepening the incentive for India to focus on
civilian nuclear energy, and deepening its incentive to
continue to move into the mainstream of the nonproliferation
But, to be honest, and to answer your question, there's not
Senator Feingold. Well, I appreciate your candor.
Secretary Rood, you testified that India has submitted a
document with the IAEA that satisfies the requirement of the
Hyde Act that India submit a declaration of its facilities in
order to ensure that international--international assistance--
does not benefit India's weapons programs.
Isn't it true, however, that India has negotiated an
agreement with the IAEA which provides that the final
declaration will not be submitted until the safeguards
agreement has entered into force, and this has not yet
Mr. Rood. The Indian Government, in 2006, published a
separation plan, that is, a plan to separate its civilian
facilities from those related to its strategic program. Since
that time, the Indian Government has negotiated an IAEA
safeguards agreement, and they have transmitted their
separation plan to the IAEA Director General, which has then
been transmitted to the IAEA membership.
The Indian Government stands behind their separation plan,
and that plan for the phased application of safeguards is--
constitutes India's indication of how it plans to declare
facilities as civilian.
Senator Feingold. But the final declaration has not been
submitted, is that right?
Mr. Rood. The separation plan, because it was concluded in
2006, will need some updating, but the list of facilities, as
Mr. Stratford mentioned earlier, that will be subjected to
safeguards, and the phasing remain operative.
Senator Feingold. Is it your intent to authorize licenses
pursuant to the United States-India Cooperation Agreement
before India files the legally required declaration?
Mr. Rood. IAEA safeguards would need to be in place at a
facility before we would allow for the export of material from
the United States to that facility. Therefore, for IAEA
safeguards to be enforced, the agreement that you reference
would need to take effect.
Senator Feingold. So you would not authorize licenses prior
Mr. Rood. Because there would need to be IAEA safeguards in
Senator Feingold. Secretary Rood, does India have a legally
binding commitment to include all of the facilities it
announced as civilian in 2006 in the declaration?
Mr. Rood. Your question was, does India require----
Senator Feingold. Does India have a legally binding
commitment to include all of the facilities it announced as
civilian in March 2006 in the declaration we just discussed?
Mr. Rood. Do you want to take that?
Mr. Stratford. Senator, the answer to that would be no.
The declaration will be made after the safeguards agreement
comes into force, our understanding is, is that the declaration
will be the same facilities, in the same timeframe, as was
included in the separation plan. But, that's not a legally
binding commitment, and when the safeguards agreement enters
into force, ultimately, it will be up to India, what it submits
to safeguards, and when.
Senator Feingold. And is there a document that you can
provide to the committee with--in this regard, at this time?
Mr. Stratford. The document that we would provide would be
the separation plan, and specifically point you to paragraph
14, that's included in the President's submission package, but
we can certainly get you a clean, more readable copy.
Senator Feingold. All right.
The provision of enrichment or reprocessing technologies by
any member of the Nuclear Supplier Group could also directly
benefit India's nuclear program, as safeguards do not prevent
the transfer of people and knowledge.
A recent Washington Post article suggested that the State
Department gained assurances that none of the members intend to
do so, however, that wasn't a binding commitment either, was
Mr. Rood. Senator, at the Nuclear Supplier's Group meeting
which concluded on September 6, during those discussions there
was a substantial amount of discussion with respect to
enrichment and reprocessing sales. None of the countries that
were present at that meeting indicated a desire to, or plan to,
supply those technologies to India.
Senator Feingold. But it's not a binding commitment, right?
Mr. Rood. That was a statement of their intentions.
Senator Feingold. So, it's not a binding commitment?
Mr. Rood. Yes; that's right.
Senator Feingold. France has indicated it would consider a
request to provide reprocessing technologies to India. The only
way to prevent this is to get an agreement from all the NSG
members not to provide such technologies.
Secretary Burns, and Secretary Rood, do any members of the
NSG oppose banning transfers of enrichment and reprocessing
technologies to nations like India, that are not members of the
Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty?
Mr. Rood. Yes, would be the answer to your question.
Senator Feingold. They all--?
Mr. Rood. You asked, did any members of the nuclear
suppliers group indicate----
Senator Feingold. Any oppose----
Mr. Rood [continuing]. Opposition to the supply of
enrichment reprocessing technologies to countries that were not
members of the NPT?
Senator Feingold. Some do oppose it? The banning?
Mr. Rood. Yes.
Senator Feingold. And who are they?
Mr. Rood. I would prefer to provide that answer to you in
closed session. The NSG membership rules indicates the
discussion is supposed to be confidential.
Senator Feingold. I appreciate that. Thank you, gentlemen,
thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Dodd. Thank you very much, Senator.
Senator Barrasso. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
In this morning's Washington Post, there was an article,
``06 Blueprint Leak Intensifies Concerns over U.S./India
Deal,'' I don't know if you've had a chance to see the article
yet, but it says, ``In January 2006, an Indian Government
agency purchased newspaper ads seeking help in building an
obscure piece of metal machinery. The details of the project
available to bidders were laid out in a series of drawings that
jolted nuclear weapons experts who discovered them that spring.
The blueprints depicted the inner workings of a centrifuge, a
machine used to enrich uranium for nuclear bombs. In most
Western countries, such drawings would have been considered
secret, but the Indian diagrams were available for a nominal
bidding fee. . . .'' And the person who was able to buy the
diagrams paid about $10.
Are we concerned about leakage of nuclear secrets if an
agreement like this goes through, and what do we do to prevent
it from happening?
Mr. Rood. Senator, we've seen the press article that you
reference, and of course the underlying report from an
institute called ISIS.
We obviously take very seriously the subject matter, and
the examples that were cited. We were aware of these at the
State Department prior to the publication of that article. I
would say, the Indian Government has taken significant steps to
strengthen their export controls since 2005.
In 2005, you had the enactment of a landmark piece of
legislation in India, which is a weapons of mass destruction
law, and the subsequent implementing regulations, and the
harmonization with the nuclear suppliers group and missile
technology control regime guidelines are very significant. So,
we've seen a significant improvement in Indian export controls
We obviously take very seriously this whole range of
concerns, and indeed, no export control system is perfect.
Under my area of the State Department, for instance, the
political-military bureau enforces compliance with U.S. export
laws, in part, and there are other agencies of the government
that do, as well.
Regrettably, there are American firms which are fined by
the State Department every year for violations of our export
control laws. So, while we certainly want to encourage the
Indian Government, and we believe they are taking greater steps
to control their export controls, and we take this very
seriously, there are no perfect systems, including our own.
Senator Barrasso. In looking at this agreement, I see what
we're trying to do is increase international nuclear
cooperation between the United States and India and then deal
with certain nations that do not want to cooperate on
nonproliferation objectives. How do you view this whole
relationship as helping develop increased international
Secretary Burns. Well, sir, I think the various steps that
India has committed itself to, and that it's moving ahead on, I
think, help on the nonproliferation regime, and in other areas,
as well. For example, we've talked about the danger of the
spread of enrichment and reprocessing technology of countries
who decide that they need to master the fuel cycle, which is a
huge challenge--not just in Iran in North Korea--but
potentially other parts of the world.
Indian's willingness to commit itself to work actively with
Mohamed ElBaradei and that IAEA on the concept of international
fuel banks, which Senator Nunn, and others, have worked on over
the years, I think, is an important step forward and shows an
Indian willingness to work with us, and work with the IAEA to
help stop, or fill, one of the major gaps that exists in
nonproliferation regime today. So, that's just one example.
Senator Barrasso. Do you also see economic benefits that
could come as a result of this, and talk about that a little
Secretary Burns. Yes, sir; as I mentioned in my opening
statement, I mean, there are economic benefits, I think, for
both India and the United States. For the United States, where
American firms, I think, are going to be able to compete on a
level playing field in the civilian nuclear industry, where
they have a lot to bring to bear, and I think you can see a
creation if, for example, even two of the new reactor projects
go to American firms, you'll see the creation of a minimum of 3
to 5,000 direct jobs in the United States, and 10 to 15,000
So, I think there's a clear economic benefit there, there's
an economic benefit for India, there's a huge environmental
benefit, I think, for all of us. As India's growing energy
needs get addressed--not by coal and other forms of energy
which can be deeply dangerous to the environment--but by
cleaner methods like nuclear energy.
Senator Barrasso. Well, coming from a coal State, I'll
agree with you on most of those, but you know we can do coal in
a cleaner way, as well.
So, thank you very much.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Dodd. Thank you very much, Senator.
Senator Boxer. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, I really appreciate
your holding this hearing. I do miss Joe Biden, but I think
you're just doing great.
Senator Dodd. I won't tell Joe.
Senator Boxer. Well, you can tell him.
Ambassador Burns, let me see, or Secretary Burns--I like
this conversation about jobs and the environment. You know, the
most jobs are through solar--putting solar panels on rooftops.
And, we're doing it in California--it's safer than nuclear, but
that's another subject.
I would ask unanimous consent to place in the record three
Senator Dodd. Without objection.
Senator Boxer. One is an editorial from the New York Times
that says, ``A Bad Deal, the nuclear agreement was a bad idea
from the start. Mr. Bush and his team were so eager for a
foreign policy success, they gave away the store. They
extracted no promise from India to stop producing bomb-making
materials, no promise not to expand the arsenal, and no promise
not to resume nuclear testing.''
Now, that's pretty much covers the core issues, but if I
were writing the editorial, I would have said, ``And no promise
from India to stop military-to-military exercises with Iran.''
The second two documents relate to the story that Senator
Barrasso raised, the article that was in the paper regarding
the blueprint leak, which is intensifying concerns over the
United States-India deal--not on your part--but on some of our
And also, the third is the full report by the ISIS, and the
gentleman who got that document for $10 was David Albright,
who's a former American U.N. weapons inspector.
So, I'm going to put those documents in the record, and I
want to ask some questions, because Mr. Rood, you said, in
answer to Senator Barrasso's good question that--and I wrote it
down--that India has tightened up its security since 2005. Are
you aware that this happened in 2006?
Mr. Rood. There's been a process since the 2005 passage of
the WMD export control legislation in India, in which India has
continued to take steps to improve its export controls over
Senator Boxer. OK, I just want to make sure you knew that.
Mr. Rood. Yes, ma'am.
Senator Boxer. That this happened after 2005.
And then, also, you said, ``Well, we are looking into
this,'' and so on and so forth. Why is it that Mr. Albright
said that he shared findings with State Department officials
but was turned away? ``It didn't fit with their talking points;
at the highest level, they were dismissive of our concerns,''
Mr. Rood. It's my understanding, Senator, that Mr. Albright
and some of his colleagues did meet with officials at the State
Department, it wasn't myself, personally, but there were other
officials. Their characterization is that they took this
information seriously that was provided, although as I
understand it, there was a description of the information,
there weren't any particular documents at that time provided by
Mr. Albright and his colleagues.
Senator Boxer. Well, we do have the documents, and we're
putting them in the record--the blueprints that were sold for
$10, and the response from Mr. Albright to the way he was
treated at the State Department, which I think, is not a good
thing. And I would say that my colleagues may differ at the end
of the day on this agreement, but I think all of us have
expressed some concern in one way or another, about this
And so, you know, I'm not at all satisfied that you're
taking this seriously. I know when you're trying to rush
something through, it's a little annoying to have to listen to
critics, but I think you're not dealing with any old thing
here. You're dealing with the capability of a country to build
more of an arsenal, and it's troubling.
Mr. Chairman, I don't feel any better about this deal then
I did when the Senate passed the Hyde Act in 2006, because the
two amendments that I wanted to see passed, here, of course
didn't pass. Russ Feingold and I lost, and that's just the way
it goes. It's, you know, we just couldn't get the votes.
One of those amendments was to make sure that this extra
material couldn't be used to build more weapons. We wanted to
make sure that we had that protection. Without that
protection--and I think Senator Kerry pointed out that
everybody is trying to get to this point--we can't be sure.
India says this and that, and listen, I have the best
Indian-American community in the country--probably the
largest--and I adore them, and I hear from them, and they want
so much for me to be on the side of this agreement. I want our
relations with India to thrive and prosper. But I also feel
it's in everybody's interests to make sure we have protections
in place--including India's, including the people who live
there, and people all over the world. When you see this
blueprint, which would be secret in any other Western country
being printed, and it has to do with building centrifuges, sold
for ten bucks. It's a little alarming, and nothing that was
said today gives me a sense that you take it very seriously.
And then, further, Mr. Rood, your comment like, ``Oh, well,
companies do this all the time and we don't like it.'' This
isn't a company--this particular printing was done by the IRE,
a subentity of India's Department of Atomic Energy. So, it's
part of the government.
So, these two issues, Mr. Chairman, are very important. And
you and I have talked about this. I've been very open--I would
love to support this agreement with the addition of two
amendments. The second of these amendments deals with the
Iranian issue, to which India has responded, ``Oh, how could
anyone think we would ever have any military cooperation with
Iran?'' Well, if that's the way they feel, why don't they
support an amendment that simply says they have to stop the
military to military contacts? But they won't do it.
And I don't have to go into the threat of Iran. You know,
I--it's disconcerting, giving some of the things Ahmadinejad
has said, some of the things they're doing in Iraq, what
they're doing in the Middle East, who they're supporting, and
all the rest.
So, why not be able to have an amendment to this agreement
that simply says, ``Stop your military-to-military contacts
Why, Mr. Burns, couldn't we do that?
Secretary Burns. Well, the first thing I'd say is, I
absolutely share your sense of alarm about what the Iranians
are doing in their nuclear program, and Iraq, and other areas--
you're absolutely right, it's a serious threat to all of us.
Second, the Indian's record on this--and it's something on
which we've differed from time to time, and that's what
partners do, because there's an Indian interest in Iranian
energy supplies, it's the core of their economic relationship,
they've got a long and complicated history. There are contacts
from time to time, low-level ones, between their navies, as you
On balance, though, I think what you've seen from the
Indians is a genuine concern about the dangers that are posed
by the Iranians developing a nuclear weapons program. They
voted twice in the IAEA Board of Governors, not only to
criticize the Iranians, but to report their noncompliance with
the IAEA to the U.N. Security Council, they have scrupulously
complied with three chapter 7, U.N. Security Council sanctions
resolutions against Iran.
So, no, Senator, it's not a perfect record, we don't see
eye to eye on everything with regard to Iran, but I do think
you've seen the Indians take steps that demonstrate their
concern, and their opposition, to the development of a nuclear
weapons program, a nuclear weapons capability in Iran.
Senator Boxer. Well, I would ask unanimous consent to place
into the record, an article from Defense News, March 19th,
2007, ``India-Iran Form Joint Group to Deepen Defense Ties.''
Senator Boxer. If you're telling me you believe, and you
trust, then we should verify. Ronald Reagan used to say,
''Trust but verify.`` All right? We trust them, yeah. So,
what's the problem with putting some of these things in
I just hope that since you're trying to rush this through,
and waive the time requirement that Members of the Senate on
both sides of the aisle would perhaps put a couple of more
principles into this agreement, which would make many of us
feel a lot better. Trust, but verify, and I think we'd all feel
a lot better.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
[The articles submitted for the record by Senator Boxer are
located on page 55 of this hearing print.]
Senator Dodd. Thank you, Senator, very much.
Senator Webb. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
First, I would like to say, gentlemen, I have a number of
concerns, I think you heard--particularly from Senator Corker,
actually--about trying to find some consistency in foreign
policy, and neither Senator Corker nor I were here in the
Senate when these earlier pieces of legislation were voted on.
I certainly would agree that it's important for us to
deepen our relationships with India. I wrote a piece in the New
York Times more than 10 years ago, talking about the best way
for us to have some counterbalancing to the emergence of China
in the region, and India, obviously, is one of the two or three
most important countries.
And with respect to nuclear power, I would like to see more
nuclear power plants built in the United States as part of a
comprehensive energy plan that includes a lot of these other
issues, I certainly wouldn't have any hesitations about that.
But looking at this, and trying to sort out, the concerns
that we've been hearing, for me, it seems to be the
implications of India not having been a signatory to the
nuclear nonproliferation agreements. And in effect, I think,
this agreement potentially affects the way that we communicate
with other countries around the world about the importance of
And so my first question would be, why? Why--what is it
that has led India to refuse to sign this agreement?
Mr. Rood. Well, the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty is, of
course, a very important treaty, and one that we strongly
support. But when we talk about the nuclear nonproliferation
regime, we talk about a number of other elements being used to
implement that regime, such as IAEA safeguards, and additional
protocol. We are seeking things like a limitation on enrichment
and reprocessing technologies that can be used to make the
material for weapons, the Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty, for
instance, is another instrument--not strictly speaking the NPT
would be a separate treaty.
If you talk about all of those things, while India has
not--and is, right now their position is they would not sign
the NPT treaty itself--they have moved forward with an IAEA
safeguards agreement. They have committed to conclude an
additional protocol, they have supported various----
Senator Webb. Yeah; but they have not signed the agreement.
Mr. Rood. Not the NPT itself, but----
Senator Webb. What is the justification that they use for
not signing the agreement.
Mr. Rood. The NPT, if India were to join, is what is
defined as a non-nuclear weapons state. Of course, they would
need to forego their nuclear weapons. India--while it doesn't
meet the definition on the NPT as a nuclear weapons state, they
obviously do possess nuclear weapons. So, it's their desire to
retain the nuclear weapons capability that, of course, would be
in conflict with the NPT treaty, itself.
Senator Webb. Do we attach significance to this agreement
when we are talking to other countries about nonproliferation?
Mr. Rood. Yes, sir; we do. And we think on the whole is a
net gain for nonproliferation, that India move greater----
Senator Webb. No, but when we're talking to other nations.
We do attach policy significance to the fact that there is this
agreement, and that it's important for----
Mr. Rood. The NPT?
Senator Webb. Right.
Mr. Rood. Yes, sir; we do attach importance to that.
Senator Webb. How would you characterize our relationship
with India. Are they an ally? Mr. Secretary, I've heard you use
the word ``partner.''
Secretary Burns. Yeah, I mean, I think like any
partnership, we don't see eye to eye on every issue, we have
differences over some issues, but I think there's a growing
number of issues on which we work together and seek common
ground, and I guess that's what I'd define ``partner.''
Senator Webb. If I were to look at their foreign policy
objectives it--from my understanding--their position is that
they want to be a centrist nation, and be directly allied with
no major power. Was that fairly correct?
Secretary Burns. I think that's right. I mean, India--
what's obvious, I think, just as you mentioned, India's
emerging as a more and more important player, not just in it's
own region, but in the world, and as it emerges, I think, the
areas of potential common ground and potential shared
responsibility are increasing, too, and that's what we're
trying to keep our focus on. And that, I think, is the basis
for an emerging partnership.
Now, that--again, as you said--is not the same thing as the
kind of neat alliance in which we agree on every issue.
Senator Webb. Right.
Secretary Burns. But I think it suits our interests, I
think it suits Indian interests, and more broadly, it suits
Senator Webb. Well, just listening to some of the questions
and the responses, it would seem to me that there are a lot of
sovereignty issues that India bring to the table as to why
they're not doing certain things, because they want to maintain
independence and international relations. For instance, there's
a question from Senator Boxer about military-to-military
relations with Iran--that's a sovereignty issue, and I would
assume that's one of the reasons that they have taken a
position on that, or that they have.
Secretary Burns. I think that's certainly true, Senator.
Senator Webb. Would you explain the hurry on this? What is
the urgency here in terms of wanting an agreement in this
Secretary Burns. Well, Senator, I'd say two factors, and I
know it's an extraordinary thing to be asking of the Congress,
because this is a very important agreement with some serious
implications, many of which have been discussed today.
The two factors, I would say, would be first--there's a
considerable momentum that's been built up, you know, over the
course of the years and in negotiating this agreement. It's a
momentum that's been built up with a particular Indian
leadership which has shown quite remarkable political courage,
and helping to get both of us to this point.
And it just seems to us that now is the time to try to take
advantage of that momentum, lock in this progress, and as both
of us--as both of our countries face elections and
transitions--try to lock in that progress and create an even
stronger foundation for the next administration's in both
countries to build on.
The second factor that I'd cite is, really, has more to do
with commerce. And that is that, even though the Indian
Government has provided, I think, some very important
assurances that it wants to create a level playing field for
American firms, that it does not intend to enter into, or
conclude, bilateral nuclear cooperation agreements with other
countries, until the 123 Agreement is finalized--there's still
a risk in, with the passage of time, that after the NSG
exception, other countries are going to be able to take
advantage of this process and do more business in India at the
expense of our firms.
So, I'm not citing that as the first reason, but it's an
important consideration, I think.
Senator Webb. Thank you. Thank you for your testimony.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Dodd. I was going to add, picking up on Senator
Webb's last question, and correct me if I'm wrong on this, call
it an ironic twist. But in moving more rapidly on this, putting
aside the legitimate issues raised about why do we need to move
rapidly, for those who would seek to modify this agreement,
ironically, the speed with which we do this allows for
modifications to occur. That if we would wait until the
provisions of law prohibit any modifications, in a sense, the
ability to make some changes that some of us may want to do
would be prohibited under the law from doing so. It's
unamendable at that point. Am I understanding that correctly?
Mr. Rood. Yes, Senator; that is correct.
Senator Dodd. So, the irony is that actually moving more
rapidly gives us more of a chance to correct what's sort of
counterintuitive to what we'd normally associate with time
being an ally for those who are seeking whatever modifications
we may seek on this.
Let me raise a couple of questions, again, if I can. Some
of this has been touched on, but I want to go back to the U.S.
approval of storage facilities.
I know in response to a question--maybe Senator Lugar
raised the storage issue, and I think, Mr. Rood, your response
was that none of this can happen without there being IAEA
approval, or IAEA standards, rather, in storage facilities.
The Atomic Energy Act requires that the, ``Nuclear
cooperation agreements contain a guarantee that no fissile
material the other party obtains or produced, pursuant to this
agreement, will be stored in any facility that has not been
approved in advance by the United States.''
The nuclear nonproliferation assessment Statement submitted
with the agreement, states that ``Article 7-1 of the agreement
satisfies this requirement.'' Article 7, subparagraph 1, at
least it would appear, to me, requires ``only that the storage
facilities meet the physical protection standards set by the
IAEA,'' which I believe was your response to the question, at
least as it was posed, I believe, by Senator Lugar at the time,
``An Indian storage site will be changed only if India decides
that the IAEA standards cannot be met at that site.''
So, the obvious questions are, how do you read section
123(a)(8) of the Atomic Energy Act, which I've quoted? Does it
require a guarantee in the agreement that the United States
would have to give advanced approval of the storage site? How
does this agreement provide that guarantee? We all agree that
the IAEA standard is a good one. I'm not arguing with that, in
But it seems to me that what the Atomic Energy Act requires
a higher standard than just IAEA standards, at least as I read
them. I'm not drawing the conclusion, but does the agreement
even provide an inspection mechanism, to ensure that the IAEA
physical protection standards are met at each storage site, or
would the United States have to rely upon the information
provided by India in that regard?
The Department of Energy, I might add, has an International
Nuclear Security Program to conduct bilateral assessments of
civilian nuclear sites to verify that the U.S. nuclear material
is adequately protected. I wonder if India has agreed to
conduct such bilateral assessments under this program?
It's a series of questions there.
Mr. Stratford. Thank you, Senator.
What 123(A)(8) requires is that plutonium, and high-
enriched uranium must be stored in a facility that has been
approved in advance by the United States--that's the concept.
The reason that is there, is to be sure that weapons-usable
nuclear materials don't wind up in a facility where they could
be stolen or taken away by a terrorist. That's the whole
purpose of that provision.
So, what we did was to draft a provision that says, ``All
right, plutonium, uranium-233, and high-enriched uranium may be
stored in facilities that meet IAEA physical protection
levels.'' And the way that works is, you write them down on a
list and you give it to us.
Now, suppose we don't like something that's on the list,
and we have some reason to worry about physical protection.
Then, the article calls for immediate consultations, and
remedial measures to be taken immediately. So, translated, if I
think I don't like Facility X for some reason, I can say, ``I
want to talk to you about it, and oh, by the way, I want more
guards.'' Under that article, the guards should be provided,
and then we proceed to work out the details.
Now, if we don't like the way the details are worked out,
then the material has to be moved to a different location. Now,
does this look nonstandard? Yes, it does. But as I recall, a
very similar mechanism was used by us in the Euratom Agreement,
but I'd want to check that for the record. In other words, this
is not something that appeared out of whole cloth.
Senator Dodd. And so in effect, what you're saying to me as
I hear you explain this, that would satisfy the language of the
Atomic Energy Act guarantee.
Mr. Stratford. I would say that, and so would our lawyers.
Senator Dodd. Let me go to the second question and this is
a little more complicated. I'm actually going to read part of
this, because I want to suggest at the outset, and truth in
advertising, I'm not sure I could explain this if I didn't read
it because it gets into the realm of heavy water. And while my
State has a lot of commercial power plants, I'm not going to
suggest to you I have a degree in nuclear physics, here.
The issue I want to raise with you is, are we sure that the
U.S. agreement with India will not assist India's nuclear
weapons program? And it goes to the heavy water issue. So, let
me go through this, and I apologize I'm reading this to you
rather than extemporaneously trying to explain it, but I think
it will be clear if I do it this way, and perhaps more brief.
``The United States has an obligation under article 1 of
the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty to, `'not, in any way,
assist any non-nuclear weapons state to manufacture nuclear
weapons.' '' That's article 1 of that treaty, so I'll use that
as a backdrop.
``Heavy water, water in which hydrogen is replaced by
deuterium, is used as a moderator in many Indian reactors,
which are based on the Canadian Candu reactor--India's civilian
reactors of this type would be devoted to power generation. But
other Indian reactors of the same type will be designated as
military, because they can be--and sometimes are--used not just
for power generation, but also for plutonium production.''
India allegedly used heavy water from the United States
when it produced the plutonium for its first nuclear test. Why
isn't heavy water included in the peaceful use pledge of
article 9 of the agreement? Would a diversion of heavy water
violate the agreement? That is one question.
India listed three heavy water production plants as
civilian in its separation plant. It added, though, and I quote
from them, ``We do not consider these plants as relevant for
safeguards purposes.'' And, indeed, the IAEA does not routinely
safeguard heavy water production plants.
What is to keep India from using, for military purposes,
the heavy water production plants that it says will be
designated for civilian use in the coming years? That's the
second question. Given that heavy water from those plants could
be used in India's military reactors, why did we--as a member
of the IAEA Board of Governors--not insist on a safeguards
regime for the heavy water plants, is the third question.
Now, here's where it gets here into this discussion here of
physics. I'm told here, now, when heavy water is used as a
moderator in a nuclear reactor, it absorbs neutrons, and some
of the deuterium changes to tritium. That gives you tritiated
water. If you remove the tritium from tritiated water, you can
use it to boost the yield of a nuclear weapon, or to make a
more reliable thermonuclear weapon.
The IAEA doesn't normally worry about that, I'm told,
because non-nuclear weapon states don't normally have advanced
nuclear weapon programs that could make good use of tritium.
India, however, did conduct a test that it said was of a
thermonuclear weapon. So, the diversion of tritium to military
uses might warrant prevention through safeguards.
The last question is why didn't we raise that concern when
India's safeguards agreement was considered by the IAEA Board
I apologize for the complexity of that question.
Mr. Stratford. It's a complex question. I'm not sure I got
all of it, but I think I know all of the issues that I can
respond to it.
Senator Dodd. I'm not sure I did either, when I read it,
Mr. Stratford. A heavy-water moderated reactor could be
either purely civilian, to produce electricity for the grid----
Senator Dodd. Right.
Mr. Stratford [continuing]. And India has a number of
Senator Dodd. Right.
Mr. Stratford. Or, you could use it as a production
reactor, to produce nuclear material for weapons. If it was not
a civilian facility that was not under safeguards, you could do
Senator Dodd. It would be hard, if not impossible, to do
the latter if you didn't have the heavy water, is that correct?
Mr. Stratford. You have to have the heavy water.
Now, the IAEA will safeguard heavy water if a supplier asks
it to. So, if we were to send heavy water to India, for use in
one of those 300-megawatt electrical, heavy water reactors,
number one, we could do that legitimately, and number two, we
would ask the IAEA to actually safeguard that heavy water, OK?
But we don't export large quantities of heavy water, we
don't have the production capacity anymore, and I don't think
we use any heavy water except for small amounts for research,
One of the issues is, take a civilian reactor, with heavy
water in it, that was on the military side, even if it didn't
produce military material. Then you move it over to the
civilian side, and the IAEA is safeguarding it. But it is still
loaded with Indian heavy water on which there are no bilateral
The safeguards agreement allows India to swap out the heavy
water, and bring in fresh heavy water. Why would they want to
do that? Because as heavy water sits in a heavy water reactor,
the water becomes tritiated, tritium builds up in the heavy
water. And you eventually have to take it away and detritiate
Now, the question is, What happens to the tritium? And can
it go into military uses. The IAEA does not safeguard tritium,
at all. So, there is an issue with respect to an Indian
reactor, which has been placed under safeguards, but is still
being totally fueled with both fuel and heavy water by India.
But, what happens if that heavy water--I'm sorry--if that
reactor goes under safeguards, and we fuel it. If we fuel it,
then, what our agreement says, is, number one, heavy water is a
by-product material--I'm sorry, tritium. Tritium is a by-
product material, No. 1. No. 2, by-product material is
specifically subject to peaceful use guarantees, in article 9,
and No. 3, if you go to the agreed minute, India has to give us
an annual accounting of all tritium produced in a reactor where
our nuclear fuel is in it. So----
Senator Dodd. Let me interrupt, for one second.
Mr. Stratford. Sure.
Senator Dodd. What if Russia provided heavy water?
Mr. Stratford. That's the next issue. If Russia provided
heavy water, No. 1, Russia would ask for the heavy water to be
under safeguards, and then, I'm not sure what would happen
after that, because I have not seen a Russian agreement for
But, as I said, if we supplied to the reactor, the tritium
issue goes away, because of safeguards and accounting--they owe
us an accounting.
What I want to do is go back into the NSG this fall, or
before that, and say, ``Russia, France, you know what? If we
fuel a reactor, all of a sudden, that tritium comes under U.S.
controls.'' Now, I'd like to be sure that you have the same
controls that I do, in order to take away the tritium issue in
India. Once, I think, we get to the major suppliers, the ones
who would supply either reactors or uranium, I think we can fix
that problem across the board.
Senator Dodd. Thank you, that is a legitimate concern. Is
that correct? That's a question.
Mr. Stratford. Yes; that is a legitimate concern, because
the IAEA does not safeguard tritium. Therefore, it's up to us
to figure out how to get controls over tritium. For our
agreement, we've done it. I'd like to be sure others wind up in
the same place.
Senator Dodd. On that last point, I guess I understand what
you're saying. It was within our ability to ask the IAEA to
consider this as part of their standards. Have we made such a
request of the IAEA?
Mr. Stratford. No, but I have talked to their lawyers about
it. Their view is, is that if we supply them heavy water, the
IAEA will put the heavy water under safeguards, and just as if
we supply them fuel, everything that is derived in that reactor
is subject to our controls.
But the IAEA has never been empowered to treat tritium the
same way it treats fissionable material. So, they simply don't
apply safeguards to tritium.
Part of it is because they've never been empowered to do
it, and part of it, because as a practical matter, it's
difficult to do. I mean, all of tritium you might get out of an
entire reactor load of heavy water might fit in a container
that big. And tritium--this is not the right word--evaporates.
Twelve years later you have half as much as was in there
before. So, it's actually difficult to maintain safeguards over
something that ephemeral.
Senator Dodd. I thank you for that answer, and I think I've
understood your answer. It's complicated, and I appreciate it.
And I apologize again, talking about tritiated water is not in
my common vocabulary, so I appreciate your response to it.
I raised the issue a moment ago about storage facilities,
and let me ask one last question regarding this. Where does it
say, in these agreements that material must be moved if, in
fact, we draw the conclusion that a facility is unsafe? It's
Article 7, Storage and Re-Transfers. And it says, well, I'll
let you answer the question.
Mr. Stratford. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Chairman, what it says is that--starting in the middle
of that paragraph--if there are grounds to believe that the
provisions of this sub-article are not being fully complied
with, that means that I think that the physical protection is
not good. Immediate consultations may be called for.
Following upon such consultations, each party shall
ensure--by means of such consultations, that necessary remedial
measures are taken immediately. Translated, ``I want more
guards. Give me more guards.''
Such measures shall be sufficient to restore the levels of
physical protection referred to above, at the facility in
question. OK, I got what I want.
However, if the party on whose territory the nuclear
material in question is stored determines that such measures
are not feasible--translated, ``I can't afford it, no more
guards''--then it will shift the nuclear material to another
appropriate, listed facility it identifies.
Remember, I have already cleared a list where things may
go. So, if I say, ``I want more guards,'' and they say, ``No,
you can't have it, it's too expensive,'' then what they have to
do is go find another facility on the list that I have already
cleared, and shift it to that facility. That's how it works.
Senator Dodd. Again, let me apologize--these are very
artful documents put together, but let me ask the obvious
question that a layman would have. Is there an end-game at any
point here? When, despite this, sort of moving things around,
we're, at some point, not satisfied that the safeguards are
sufficient enough? Is there anything in here that would allow
us, then, to insist upon that material being moved, beyond just
to another site?
Mr. Stratford. The answer is, yes, because of what I just
read. It is conceivable, there might be a site where we might
not be happy about physical protection. But I think it's
important to remember that India has been using separated
plutonium for a military program, to some extent, a civilian
program, for over 30 years. And to the best of my knowledge,
none of it has ever gone astray, been stolen, et cetera, so
they know what they're doing when it comes to physical
protection, and I have every reason to believe that there are
facilities that we would legitimately let plutonium be stored
Senator Dodd. Well, I thank you, and there may be some
additional questions, and I really do appreciate it very much.
This is a very complicated, by very important, obviously, as
witnessed by the member participation.
And let me end where we began. Thank you, Secretary Burns
for your willingness to work with us. And I can't speak for the
other body, I have great respect for Howard Berman, who chairs
the counterpart committee to this committee in the House of
Representatives who, I know, has issues with this agreement.
And I know members here do, as well, as you heard reflected in
the questions today. And it would be very wise, in my view, to
leave that door open, here, to determine whether or not some of
these concerns can be addressed, in the coming--literally--
hours as we're trying to deal with this.
I know it is certainly Senator Biden's hope, and I hesitate
to speak for him--but I'm fairly confident here that it's his
opinion, and mine, as well, that it's in our common interests
to try to get this done. And that's not to suggest that
questions have been raised, including ones raised by myself,
that need some further clarification and modifications. But my
hope is that we can get this done and move forward quickly.
And again, the only opportunity to receive any
modifications is, in fact, this window. Once that window
closes, for those of us who have some concerns, that option
So, I'm hopeful that we can get that done, I'm very
grateful to Senator Lugar and other members of the committee
for their work, and we intend to work very closely with you and
to try and achieve this goal. It's very important, for all of
the reasons that I've identified earlier today.
And again, on behalf of Senator Biden, we clearly
appreciate the work that's been done.
I want to thank our staffs, by the way. This is a very
complicated area, and they've done an excellent job on the
briefing materials for all of this, as well. We're very
grateful to you, Secretary Burns.
The committee will stand adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 4:50 p.m., the hearing was adjourned.]
Additional Material Submitted for the Record
Prepared Statement of Hon. George V. Voinovich, U.S. Senator From Ohio
Mr. Chairman, today's hearing on the Agreement Concerning Peaceful
Uses of Nuclear Energy between the United States and India is an
important milestone for the U.S.-India strategic partnership and our
joint commitment toward energy security and energy independence.
The United States and India have established a strategic
partnership based upon shared democratic values. We also share vital
national interests, including victory in the war against violent
Islamic extremism, halting the proliferation of weapons of mass
destruction, and a commitment toward regional stability in South and
I have long been an advocate of nuclear power as an environmentally
friendly means toward achieving energy independence. This agreement
will help meet India's energy needs, lessen its dependence on imported
oil--including that from Iran--and strengthen energy security for both
India and the United States. Nuclear power will bring clean, efficient
energy to India and reduce air pollution locally, regionally, and
This Agreement will also open up bilateral trade and American
investment in India's nuclear energy sector for the first time in over
30 years. The opportunity for U.S. companies is tremendous. According
to the U.S.-India Business Council (USIBC), nuclear trade with India
can potentially yield a total commercial opportunity of $126-$158
billion for American industry. The USIBC estimates commercial nuclear
trade with India could create up to 277,000 high-tech American jobs.
Mr. Chairman, I am committed to our continued strategic partnership
with India. This Agreement will offer major energy, economic,
environmental, and national security benefits to both our countries. As
such, I urge the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to report
favorably--and for the Senate to expeditiously approve--the Agreement
Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy between the United States
Responses of Under Secretary William Burns and Acting Under Secretary
John Rood to Questions Submitted for the Record by Senator John Kerry
Question. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said that India
``would take on the same responsibilities and practices . . . as other
leading countries with advanced nuclear technology, such as the United
States.'' Specifically, India has agreed to identify and separate its
civilian and military nuclear facilities; declare its civilian programs
to the IAEA; sign an Additional Protocol for its civilian nuclear
facilities; continue its voluntary nuclear test moratorium; work with
the United States to sign a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty; refrain
from transferring enrichment and reprocess technologies; and support
comprehensive export control legislation and adherence to the Missile
Technology Control Regime and the Nuclear Suppliers Group guidelines.
Do you have sufficient confidence that these
nonproliferation safeguards are adequate?
Answer. Under this Initiative, India remains outside the Nuclear
Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) but assumes important nonproliferation
responsibilities and obligations, including separating its civil and
military nuclear facilities and programs, accepting IAEA safeguards at
its civil nuclear facilities, and signing and implementing an
Additional Protocol. India has created a robust national export control
system, including through harmonization with and adherence to the
Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and the Missile Technology Control Regime
(MTCR) guidelines and annexes. Additionally, India has pledged to
continue its unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing and is working
with the United States to conclude a multilateral Fissile Material
Cutoff Treaty--a longstanding objective of the international community.
In joining the Initiative with the United States, India has
committed itself to uphold the practices of responsible nations with
advanced nuclear technology. And it has agreed to participate in
cooperative efforts to deal with the challenge posed by the
proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery
Individually, each of these activities helps strengthen the global
nonproliferation regime. Together, they move India into closer
conformity with international nonproliferation standards and practices,
and this development advances U.S. nonproliferation policy and nuclear
security goals in a way that will make the United States and the world
While these important nonproliferation steps by India establish a
firm foundation for additional nonproliferation and
counterproliferation cooperation, civil nuclear supply must still be
subject to IAEA safeguards, end-use assurances, and scrutiny by all
suppliers. Accordingly, the U.S. and other potential suppliers to India
have international, and in many cases domestic, legal and policy
requirements to ensure that items supplied under their agreements for
peaceful nuclear cooperation exclusively serve the civil sector.
The U.S. and other NSG members rely on IAEA inspection and
monitoring at facilities where IAEA safeguards are being applied, which
will be the only facilities to which U.S. or internationally supplied
nuclear technology, equipment, and material will be transferred. The
IAEA Board of Governors approved a safeguards agreement with India that
meets standard IAEA safeguards practices and procedures. Once a
facility is placed on the Annex to the safeguards agreement, that
facility will continue under safeguards unless India and the IAEA
``jointly determine'' that the facility is no longer usable for any
nuclear activity relevant from the point of view of safeguards.
Moreover, an Additional Protocol will provide for broadened IAEA access
to facilities and information regarding civil nuclear-related
In addition, there are several ways the U.S. is assured that dual-
use nuclear exports administered by the Department of Commerce are
going to reliable recipients of U.S. origin items and are not diverted
to unauthorized end-users or end-uses. As part of the license
application process we require certification that the nuclear dual-use
item(s) will not be used in any of the prohibited activities described
in Sec. 744.2(a) of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).
Through the licensing process, the intelligence and enforcement
communities provide information on the bona fides of prospective end-
users. Commerce determines the bona fides of the transaction and
suitability of the end-user through the use of prelicense checks. This
information is then used to make licensing decisions. As part of the
approval process, export licenses normally have conditions attached
that prohibit reexport, retransfer, or use in sensitive nuclear,
chemical, biological, or missile end-uses. We require applicants to
inform end-users of the licensing conditions. Also, through post-
shipment verifications, the U.S. visits recipients of U.S.-origin items
to ensure that the items have actually been delivered to the authorized
ultimate consignee or end-user and that those items are being used as
stated on the export license application. Licensing decisions are, or
course, guided by the United States being able to successfully complete
both prelicense and post-shipment checks.
As another example, the transfer of nuclear technology requires
authorization by the Secretary of Energy under section 57(b) of the
Atomic Energy Act of 1954. The regulations that implement section
57(b), found in 10 CFR Part 810, contain the conditions for such
technology transfers, and the Hyde Act elaborates measures that are to
be taken for such technology transfers to India. In addition, prior to
approval of an authorization the U.S. Government obtains government-to-
government assurances that transferred technology will not be used for
any military or nuclear explosive purpose and will not be retransferred
to another country without the prior consent of the U.S. Government.
In addition, in January 2004, the Government of India provided the
United States a letter of assurances in which it affirmed its
commitment that U.S.-origin equipment, material, software, and
technology would be used only for peaceful uses, and that such items
would not be transferred from or through India for use in prohibited
unsafeguarded nuclear, WMD, or WMD delivery programs.
Question. Are you satisfied that there is no lingering ambiguity
about what happens in the event of a nuclear test by India? Are the
related public commitments made by the Indian Government nonbinding
political commitments or binding legal commitments?
Answer. In the event of a nuclear test by India, the Presidential
determination and waivers under the Hyde Act would cease to be
effective, and peaceful nuclear cooperation with India would be subject
to the prohibition in section 129 of the Atomic Energy Act. The
consequence would be that exports to India pursuant to the 123
Agreement would be terminated, absent a waiver by the President of
sections 128 and 129 of the Atomic Energy Act. The waiver standard
under these provisions is that the failure to approve an export
(section 128) or the cessation of exports (section 129) ``would be
seriously prejudicial to the achievement of United States
nonproliferation objectives or otherwise jeopardize the common defense
and security.'' A waiver by the President would be subject to
congressional review for 60 days of continuous session. Under the 123
Agreement, the United States would also have the right under article 14
to terminate the agreement, as well as the right to cease cooperation
immediately if it determined that India had taken actions that
constituted grounds for such cessation and that a resolution of the
problem created by India's actions could not be achieved through
consultations. In short, there is no ambiguity about the operation of
U.S. law and the rights of the parties under the relevant provisions of
the treaty in the circumstances described.
In addition, the United States has made clear, at senior levels as
well as in the negotiations, that ``the deal would be off'' if India
did not maintain the moratorium on nuclear testing that it committed to
continue in the Bush-Singh Joint Statement of July 18, 2005. There has
been no ambiguity in the U.S. position on this issue, and the
Government of India has indicated that it understands that these would
be the consequences. There has been some confusion in the Government of
India (and in the press) regarding the legal status of the U.S. fuel
supply assurances. There is a broad misperception in India that our
reaffirming clearly the political nature of our fuel assurances in the
President's Transmittal Letter was in fact an attempt to diminish their
reliability. We continue to discuss the distinction with the Government
of India, but as Under Secretary Burns made clear in his testimony ``we
are determined to meet (our fuel assurance) commitments to the fullest
extent consistent with U.S. law.'' We are also confident in the U.S.
legal position and in the provisions of the 123 Agreement as a basis
for implementing U.S. law in the event of a test by India.
This question also raises the issue whether ``related public
commitments made by the Indian Government'' are political commitments
or legally binding commitments. As noted above, in the Bush-Singh Joint
Statement of July 18, 2005, India undertook to continue its moratorium
on nuclear testing. As with the other commitments in the Joint
Statement, this undertaking was a political commitment. India retains
the sovereign right to conduct a nuclear test. Likewise, the U.S.
retains the right to react to such a test in accordance with U.S. law
and policy and the Government of India has indicated that it
understands these would be the consequences.
Question. Section 104(b)(1) of the Hyde Act requires the President
to certify that ``India has provided the United States and the IAEA
with a credible plan to separate civil and military nuclear facilities,
materials, and programs, and has filed a declaration regarding its
civil facilities . . . with the IAEA.'' The report submitted by the
President pursuant to the Hyde Act says that paragraph 14 in the
separation plan actually constitutes the declaration. Do you think that
is consistent with the letter and the intent of the Hyde Act?
Answer. We think it is consistent with the letter and intent of the
Hyde Act. As noted in our report pursuant to the section 104(c) of the
Hyde Act, paragraph 14 of India's Separation Plan describes the
``civil'' elements of India's nuclear program, specifically naming the
14 reactors that will be declared ``civil'' and establishing a
timetable for placing them under safeguards, as well as describing the
treatment of other types of facilities (breeder reactors, research
reactors, upstream facilities, downstream facilities, and research
facilities). The Separation Plan was transmitted on July 25, 2008, by
the Government of India to the Director General of the IAEA to be
distributed ``to all Member-States of the Agency'' (and the IAEA
circulated the Separation Plan to Members as IAEA document INFCIRC/
731). In a speech to the Indian Parliament on August 17, 2006, the
Prime Minister confirmed that the ``civil'' facilities designated in
the Separation Plan would be submitted to safeguards in a phased
manner. He made similar statements to the Indian Parliament on August
13, 2007, after negotiations were completed on the 123 Agreement.
Introducing the India-IAEA Safeguards Agreement, the Director General
of the IAEA specifically referred to the significance of the recently
circulated Separation Plan, noting that it described the facilities
expected to come under safeguards by 2014. In short, the information
contained in paragraph 14 of the Separation Plan provided the U.S. and
the IAEA with the necessary information regarding the intended scope of
India's civil facilities, and it was treated as authoritative by the
Government of India. For this reason, the President made the
determination required by section 104(b)(1) of the Hyde Act.
Question. Do you believe the agreement the administration
negotiated otherwise conforms to the Hyde Act?
Answer. Yes. The proposed agreement for nuclear cooperation between
the United States and India is fully consistent both with the Hyde Act
and the Atomic Energy Act of 1954. The President has made the seven-
part determination required by the Hyde Act (Presidential Determination
Question. How do you respond to concerns that this agreement will
allow India to divert uranium that would otherwise be required for
power generation to its nuclear weapons program, contributing to a
regional arms race?
Answer. The Agreement is not about India's nuclear weapons
production. Its purpose is to ensure that nuclear items, equipment, and
technology transferred to India are used exclusively for peaceful
purposes. With or without this Initiative, India is capable of
maintaining its existing nuclear arsenal. It has a functioning fuel
cycle and demonstrated competence with nuclear technologies.
India has stated consistently that it seeks to maintain what it
calls a ``credible minimum deterrent.'' Relative to its current
capabilities, India seeks a much larger civil nuclear energy program to
meet its real and growing energy needs. Moreover, a successfully
implemented Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative adds considerable
incentives to grow its civil nuclear energy sector, since international
cooperation will be allowed only with safeguarded facilities.
We do not believe that enhanced cooperation with India in the civil
nuclear area or greater use of nuclear reactors to produce energy for
the Indian people will contribute to or accelerate a regional arms
race. Any potential for an Indo-Pakistani or Sino-Indian arms
competition will be determined mainly by their respective bilateral
relations, rather than by civil nuclear cooperation with India. Indeed,
by bringing 64 percent of India's existing and planned thermal power
reactors (14 out of 22) as well as associated upstream and downstream
facilities and nine additional research facilities under safeguards in
perpetuity and increasing transparency, the Initiative in effect
restricts certain Indian facilities to only producing civil energy--
facilities that could otherwise be used for nuclear weapons-related
It is U.S. policy to discourage the spread of nuclear weapons
technology, and we continue to press for strategic restraint in South
Asia. We continue our diplomatic efforts with both India and Pakistan
in that regard.
Question. Some experts contend that a selective approach to
nonproliferation creates a double-standard that makes it more difficult
to rally the international community against the likes of Iran and
North Korea. Is there not some merit to this view?
Answer. There is no reason to believe, and we have seen no
indication, that this Initiative with India will encourage the
international community to view Iran's or North Korea's noncompliance
more leniently. Iran's pursuit of a nuclear weapons capability is a
national security concern to the United States and to many of its
international partners. Our partners understand the important
differences between India and Iran or North Korea and the reasons for
treating these countries differently. This is why IAEA Director General
ElBaradei, as well as states including France, the United Kingdom,
Russia, and other partners in the effort to prevent Iran from acquiring
nuclear weapons or to roll back North Korea's nuclear program have
welcomed the Initiative with India.
Responses of Under Secretary William Burns and Acting Under Secretary
John Rood to Questions Submitted for the Record by Senator Robert P.
initial u.s./india proposal for a ``clean'' nsg waiver
The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) met in an extraordinary plenary
session on August 21-22, 2008, to consider a country-specific exemption
to permit its members to engage in civilian nuclear trade with India.
However, any future U.S. civilian nuclear trade with India will be
strictly governed by the criteria established in the Hyde Act. The Hyde
Act establishes various restrictions on the type of trade the United
States can conduct with India, including the provision of fuel supplies
in a manner commensurate with ordinary reactor operating requirements.
It also lays out the consequences for future civilian nuclear trade
with New Delhi were India to conduct a nuclear weapons test.
Question 1a. Please explain why the United States, in coordination
with India, submitted an initial proposal at the August NSG plenary
session requesting that the exemption be as ``clean'' as possible and
contain minimal conditions and restrictions on civilian nuclear trade
Answer. The U.S. approach was always to seek an NSG exception that
was fully consistent with the Hyde Act and did not add conditions that
the Indian Government could not accept. The U.S.-drafted exception
text, circulated by the German NSG Chair on August 7, 2008, in advance
of the August Extraordinary Plenary, was consistent with this approach.
Similarly, the revised U.S.-drafted text for the September 4-6
Extraordinary Plenary strove to accommodate as many of the amendments
proposed during the August Plenary as possible in a way that was
consistent with the Hyde Act and with bringing the Initiative to
fruition. After intensive discussions, the NSG reached consensus on
September 6 to allow for civil nuclear cooperation with India.
Like the Hyde Act, the NSG statement incorporates the Indian
nonproliferation commitments made in the July 2005 Joint Statement
between President Bush and Prime Minister Singh. In fact, the NSG
explicitly granted the exception based on these commitments and actions
Question 1b. Why did the United States not seek to incorporate the
specific restrictions and conditions detailed in the Hyde Act into the
NSG exemption permitting civilian nuclear trade with India, so that all
other NSG members would be explicitly bound by the same restrictions
that U.S. suppliers face?
Answer. The U.S. sought an NSG exception for India that was
consistent with the Hyde Act and, at the same time, capable of
commanding a consensus within the Group. While the Hyde Act does not
require incorporation of its specific terms and restrictions in the NSG
exception, we pursued the NSG exception with an eye to the Hyde Act
both as a matter of nonproliferation policy and so as to protect U.S.
industry from any competitive disadvantage. The result is an NSG
exception that is consistent with the Hyde Act, taking into account of
the terms and restrictions of the Hyde Act.
Question 1c. Will U.S. companies be disadvantaged when competing
for business with India's civilian nuclear industry because it will be
operating under specific conditions and restrictions governing nuclear
trade that do not apply to the other NSG suppliers?
Answer. We have not seen the peaceful nuclear cooperation
agreements being negotiated by other nuclear suppliers with India and
thus do not know whether these agreements contain provisions similar to
those in the U.S.-India 123 Agreement. Nevertheless, we do not believe
that U.S. companies will be disadvantaged compared to other suppliers.
As mentioned in the answer to Question 1b above, while the Hyde Act
does not require incorporation of its specific terms and restrictions
in the NSG exception, we pursued the NSG exception with an eye to the
Hyde Act both as a matter of nonproliferation policy and so as to
protect U.S. industry from any competitive disadvantage.
progress towards completion of india-iaea additional protocol
Question 2. A Presidential Determination issued on September 10,
2008, was included in the package formally submitted to the Congress,
consistent with the requirements outlined under the Hyde Act for
expedited approval of the U.S.-India Article 123 agreement on civil
nuclear cooperation. This determination included the following
statement, addressing a specific requirement of the Hyde Act with
respect to final approval of a U.S.-India Article 123 civilian nuclear
India and the IAEA are making substantial progress toward
concluding an Additional Protocol consistent with IAEA
principles, practices, and policies that would apply to India's
civil nuclear program;
Please provide the basis for this statement, including specific
evidence that the Indian Government and the IAEA Secretariat have
exchanged the type of texts and proposals that would signify
``substantial progress'' toward concluding an Additional Protocol.
Answer. Indian External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee noted in
his statement on September 5, 2008, that India was ``working closely
with the IAEA to ensure early conclusion of an Additional Protocol to
the Safeguards Agreement.''
Indian officials have conveyed a letter to IAEA counterparts
outlining the contours of a proposed Protocol. At the time of the
President's determination, the IAEA was reviewing India's proposal and
substantive discussions between India and the IAEA had been held. The
details included in this letter as well as substantive discussions
between Indian officials and the IAEA prompted IAEA Director General
Mohamed ElBaradei to inform us on September 10, 2008, of his conclusion
that the IAEA and India are making substantial progress toward
concluding an Additional Protocol consistent with IAEA principles,
practices, and policies that would apply to India's civil nuclear
program. As we are not a party to this negotiation, we have not seen
the text of the Indian paper. We were assured however by Director
General ElBaradei's assessment of the state of progress, as well as by
the continued commitment of both parties to this effort.
Since the President's determination, Indian and IAEA officials have
held another round of talks on the Indian paper (September 17, 2008).
We look forward to conclusion of this Additional Protocol at an early
bringing india into the nonproliferation mainstream?
Ever since the initial Joint Statement between the United States
and India was signed in July 2005 by President Bush and Prime Minister
Singh, administration officials have contended that the agreement to
resume civilian nuclear trade brings significant nonproliferation
benefits. In his prepared statement for today's hearing, Acting Under
Secretary of State Rood asserts,
Regarding India's May 2006 Separation Plan, we believe its
implementation will produce a significant nonproliferation
gain. Once implemented, the percentage of India's total
installed nuclear power capacity under IAEA safeguards will
increase from 19 percent today to 65 percent by 2014. A further
increase up to 80 percent is possible if India expands its
civil nuclear infrastructure through foreign supply and
indigenous development as it currently plans.
The nonproliferation implications of placing such facilities
under IAEA safeguards are clear. Every existing or new facility
placed under safeguards will be designated as a civilian
facility and will not be available to potentially contribute to
India's nuclear weapons program. Furthermore, the Civil Nuclear
Cooperation Initiative creates an incentive for India to
declare as many facilities as possible as ``civil'' in order to
enjoy the benefits of international cooperation.
Question 3a. The primary purpose of IAEA safeguards is to ensure
that a state does not use civilian nuclear facilities to produce
fissile materials for the purposes of a nuclear weapons program. India
is a de facto nuclear weapons state today, and will remain so once the
U.S.-India civil nuclear cooperation agreement enters into force.
What nonproliferation purpose is served by placing under IAEA
safeguards those nuclear facilities designated for civilian energy
production when nonsafeguarded plants will continue to produce fissile
material for India's nuclear weapons program?
Answer. Under this Initiative, India submitted to the IAEA its plan
to separate its civil and military facilities, in which 14 reactors,
including the 4 presently safeguarded reactors, and other facilities
would be offered for safeguards. By bringing 64 percent of India's
existing and planned thermal power reactors (14 out of 22) as well as
associated upstream and downstream facilities and nine additional
research facilities under safeguards in perpetuity and increasing
transparency, the Initiative in effect restricts certain Indian
facilities to only producing civil energy--facilities that could
otherwise be used for nuclear-weapons-related purposes. Without this
Initiative, India could use all of its current and planned
unsafeguarded reactors for military purposes. With this Initiative, 8
of the 22 thermal power reactors are left on the military side of the
India has stated consistently that it seeks to maintain what it
calls a ``credible minimum deterrent.'' Relative to its current
capabilities, India does, however, seek a much larger civil nuclear
energy program to meet its real and growing energy needs. Moreover, a
successfully implemented Civil Nuclear Cooperation Initiative adds
considerable incentives to restrict growth to its civil nuclear energy
sector, since international cooperation will be allowed only with
Question 3b. Has the IAEA produced a budgetary estimate on the
impact of additional inspections on its already constrained operating
expenses? How does the IAEA expect to pay for these additional
expenses? Will the annual contribution of the United States to the IAEA
Answer. The IAEA estimated a cost for India safeguards of about
euro 1.2 million in its 2009 budget; however it indicated that this
would be offset by savings in other parts of the budget. The IAEA
expects to pay for safeguards for India out of its regular budget, of
which the U.S. share is approximately 25 percent. While we expect there
will be some impact of India safeguards on the IAEA's budget, the
overall budget is determined by Member States, and not easily
predictable. In the recent past, some increases in safeguards
activities have been offset by efficiencies in the application of
safeguards, for example.
indian civilian nuclear trade with nsg members
other than the united states
Press reports indicate that the Indian Government has provided an
oral assurance to senior U.S. officials that, regardless of the
exemption authorized by the NSG, India will not commence civilian
nuclear trade with any NSG member until the Congress approves the
Article 123 agreement, thereby authorizing U.S. civilian nuclear trade
with India in a manner consistent with the NSG exemption and the terms
of the Hyde Act.
Question 4a. Please describe the nature of this assurance in
greater detail. Did the Indian Government place an expiration date on
this assurance, e.g., the Indian Government pledged to not enter into
contracts with other NSG members until the Congress provided approval,
but only for a certain period of time?
Answer. Indian Foreign Minister Mukherjee commented publicly on
September 8, 2008, that the Indian Government intends to wait until the
U.S. Congress acts before India enters into bilateral cooperation
agreements with other countries. This assurance reflected the Foreign
Minister's understanding that the United States, having worked to
secure an NSG exception for India, was concerned that U.S. companies
not be at a competitive disadvantage compared to their international
Further to this issue, the spokesperson of the Indian Ministry of
External Affairs, which Mr. Mukherjee oversees, issued a formal
statement on September 11, 2008, stating that the Indian Government is
``taking steps to realize commercial cooperation with foreign partners
in this field. We have informed the USA about our intent to source
state of the art nuclear technologies and facilities based on the
provisions of the 123 Agreement from the U.S. [The Indian] Government
is also moving toward finalizing bilateral agreements with other
friendly partner countries such as France and Russia. While actual
cooperation will commence after bilateral agreements like the 123
Agreement come into force, the Nuclear Power Corporation of India has
already commenced a preliminary dialogue with U.S. companies in this
The assurances of Foreign Minister Mukherjee are helpful, but with
aggressive competition and bilateral agreements already in train
between India and other countries, U.S. companies are eager to enter
the market and compete without delay. Swift approval of the U.S.-India
Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation Agreement will give U.S. companies access
to this lucrative and growing civil nuclear energy market, estimated to
be worth billions of dollars.
Question 4b. An Indian Foreign Ministry spokesman was quoted last
week as saying, ``Following the NSG statement which enables civil
nuclear cooperation by NSG members with India, the government is taking
steps to realize commercial cooperation with foreign partners.''
(Agence France-Press) This week, an Indian official was quoted
anonymously as asserting, ``Though India has put its agreements with
other countries on nuclear cooperation on hold, it cannot be seen as an
open-ended wait, the onus is now squarely on the U.S. to ensure the 123
Agreement runs through the U.S. Congress and is ready for signature at
the earliest.'' (Indo-Asian News Service)
How does the Indian pledge to refrain from civilian nuclear trade
until the Congress acts accord with these reports that India has
already moved to initiate contract discussions with NSG members in the
wake of the group's approval of an exemption and may not wait
indefinitely for the approval of the Congress?
Answer. As stated in response to Question 4a above, the
spokesperson of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs issued a formal
statement on September 11, 2008, stating that the Indian Government is
``taking steps to realize commercial cooperation with foreign partners
in this field. We have informed the USA about our intent to source
state-of-the-art nuclear technologies and facilities based on the
provisions of the 123 Agreement from the U.S. [The Indian] Government
is also moving toward finalizing bilateral agreements with other
friendly partner countries such as France and Russia. While actual
cooperation will commence after bilateral agreements like the 123
Agreement come into force, the Nuclear Power Corporation of India has
already commenced a preliminary dialogue with U.S. companies in this
We have worked closely with India on all aspects of the Civil
Nuclear Cooperation Initiative, including upcoming U.S. participation
in the Indian civil nuclear market and securing a strong Letter of
Intent stating India's intention to set aside at least two reactor
sites with a minimum of 10,000 MWe generating capacity for U.S. firms.
The Indian Government's commitment to wait until the U.S. Congress
acts before India signs cooperation agreements with other countries was
made by Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee on September 8. We
welcome this senior-level assurance, but also recognize that with the
Nuclear Suppliers Group decision to permit civil nuclear trade with
India, our competitors are eager to enter the Indian energy market.
Also, given India's enormous demand for energy, which helped prompt
this Initiative, the Indian Government is understandably anxious to
We have an unprecedented and historic opportunity before us.
Together we can ensure that the United States and India complete the
journey that we began together 3 years ago, and ensure that U.S.
industry--just like its international counterparts--is able to engage
with India on civil nuclear trade.
Question 4c. The September 10, 2008, letter from Indian Foreign
Minister S. Menon to Under Secretary of State William Burns states,
``it is the intention of the Indian Government to take all steps to
adhere to the Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear
Damage prior to the commencement of international civil nuclear
cooperation under the Agreement.''
Does that mean that India has pledged to hold off on all civil
nuclear trade with all NSG members, as authorized by the NSG exemption,
until this Convention enters into force for India?
Answer. India has pledged to take the steps necessary to adhere to
the Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage (CSC),
and we expect it to do so soon. This senior-level Indian commitment to
become a party to this international liability regime as soon as
possible is an important step in ensuring that U.S. nuclear firms can
compete on a level playing field with other international competitors
who have other liability protections afforded to them by their
governments. Because of these differing circumstances, Indian
ratification of the CSC has not been a determining issue for nuclear
industries in a number of other countries. It is also worth noting that
the CSC still has not entered into force and, even with India's
ratification, will not do so until the 90th day following the date on
which at least five States with a minimum of 400,000 units of
``installed nuclear capacity'' have ratified the Convention.
Material Submitted for the Record by Senator Barbara Boxer
[From the New York Times, Sept. 9, 2008]
A Bad Deal
President Bush has failed to achieve so many of his foreign policy
goals, but last weekend he proved that he can still get what he really
wants. The administration bullied and wheedled international approval
of the President's ill-conceived nuclear deal with India.
The decision by the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group (which sets
rules for nuclear trade) means that for the first time in more than 30
years--since New Delhi used its civilian nuclear program to produce a
bomb--the world can sell nuclear fuel and technology to India.
Mr. Bush and his aides argued that India is an important democracy
and dismissed warnings that breaking the rules would make it even
harder to pressure Iran and others to abandon their nuclear ambitions.
The White House will now try to wheedle and bully Congress to
quickly sign off on the deal. Congress should resist that pressure.
The nuclear agreement was a bad idea from the start. Mr. Bush and
his team were so eager for a foreign policy success that they gave away
the store. They extracted no promise from India to stop producing bomb-
making material. No promise not to expand its arsenal. And no promise
not to resume nuclear testing.
The administration--and India's high-priced lobbyists--managed to
persuade Congress in 2006 to give its preliminary approval. But
Congress insisted on a few important conditions, including a halt to
all nuclear trade if India tests another weapon.
That didn't stop the White House from insisting on more generous
terms from the suppliers' group. When New Zealand and a group of other
sensible countries tried to impose similar restrictions, the
administration pulled out all of the diplomatic stops. (Officials
proudly reported that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made
at least two dozen calls to governments around the world to press for
the India waiver.)
The suppliers' group gave its approval after India said it would
abide by a voluntary moratorium on testing--but it does not require any
member to cut off trade if India breaks that pledge.
That means that if India tests a nuclear weapon, it could still
bypass American suppliers and keep buying fuel and technology from
other less exacting sellers. Let us be clear about this. It is the
administration that disadvantaged American companies when it argued for
more lenient rules from the suppliers group than those written into
And let us also be clear that Congress's restrictions were a
sensible effort to limit the damage from this damaging deal and
maintain a few shreds of American credibility when it comes to
restraining the spread of nuclear weapons.
Lawmakers should hold off considering the deal at least until the
new Congress takes office in January. And they must insist that at a
minimum, the restrictions already written into American law are
strictly adhered to.
The next President will have to do a far better job containing the
world's growing nuclear appetites. And for that, he will need all of
the moral authority and leverage he can muster.
[From the Washington Post, Sept. 18, 2008]
'06 Blueprint Leak Intensifies Concerns Over U.S.-India Deal
(By Joby Warrick)
In January 2006, an Indian government agency purchased newspaper
ads seeking help in building an obscure piece of metal machinery. The
details of the project, available to bidders, were laid out in a series
of drawings that jolted nuclear weapons experts who discovered them
The blueprints depicted the inner workings of a centrifuge, a
machine used to enrich uranium for nuclear bombs. In most Western
countries, such drawings would be considered secret, but the Indian
diagrams were available for a nominal bidding fee, said David Albright,
a former U.N. weapons inspector. He said he acquired the drawings to
prove a point.
``We got them for about $10,'' said Albright, who called the
incident a ``serious leak of sensitive nuclear information.''
India has since tightened its bidding procedures, but the incident
has fueled concerns among opponents of a U.S.-Indian civilian nuclear
deal that Congress is expected to consider in the coming weeks.
The accord, first announced in 2005 by the Bush administration,
would lift a decades-old moratorium on nuclear trade with India,
allowing U.S. companies to share sensitive technology despite that
country's refusal to ban nuclear testing or sign the nuclear Non-
Proliferation Treaty. Backers of the deal say it will cement U.S. ties
with India and reward a country that has been a responsible steward of
nuclear technology since it first joined the nuclear weapons club in
But opponents say India's record on nonproliferation is not as
unblemished as is claimed by the White House, which regards the nuclear
pact as one of the foreign-policy highlights of the Bush
administration's second term. Critics, including former U.S. diplomats,
military officers and arms-control officials, accuse the White House of
rushing the agreement through Congress without considering the long-
``This deal significantly weakens U.S. and international
security,'' said retired Army Lt. Gen. Robert G. Gard, Jr., chairman of
the Washington-based Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation.
Yesterday, a group of 34 arms-control advocates and former government
officials urged Congress to reject the deal in its current form.
Administration officials have repeatedly lauded India's efforts to
prevent the spread of nuclear technology, contrasting its behavior with
that of Pakistan, the home base of Abdul Qadeer Khan, the acknowledged
nuclear smuggler who delivered weapons secrets to Libya, Iran and North
R. Nicholas Burns, the former Under Secretary of State for
Political Affairs and a chief supporter of the landmark accord, said in
a recent forum that India was ``playing by the rules of the [nuclear]
club but not allowed to join the club.'' Burns said the agreement
``strengthened the international nonproliferation regime because it
resolves an inherent contradiction in the regime.''
Likewise, India's government says it deserves the trust of the
world's nuclear gatekeepers. ``India has an impeccable nonproliferation
record,'' External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said last week.
``We have in place an effective and comprehensive system of national
Opponents point to what they call decades of deceptive practices
India has used to acquire nuclear materials from foreign governments. A
draft report by Albright and his Institute for Science and
International Security, a Washington-based nonprofit that monitors the
spread of weapons technology, cites recent incidents in which it says
India engaged in ``illicit nuclear trade.''
In an instance alleged by ISIS, India used an array of trading
companies to secretly acquire tons of tributyl phosphate, a chemical
used to separate plutonium from spent nuclear fuel. China, a longtime
supplier of TBP to India, halted shipments of the chemical in 2003
after U.S. criticism. India turned to independent trading firms that
acquired TBP from German and Russian companies without revealing the
true destination, the report said.
The ISIS report, due for release today, included photocopies of
some of the centrifuge drawings obtained by Albright, although the
group removed key specifications. Albright said he shared his findings
with State Department officials but was turned away.
``It didn't fit with their talking points,'' Albright said. ``At
the highest level, they were dismissive of our concerns.''
A State Department spokesman declined to comment on Albright's
report, saying it had not been reviewed, and said the agreement was in
the U.S. interest.
Other opponents have cited transfers of sensitive weapons
technology by individual Indian scientists. In 2004, the State
Department slapped sanctions on two Indian nuclear scientists alleged
to have passed heavy-water technology to Iran. At least four Indian
companies have been sanctioned over sales of missile technology to
Such incidents underscore concerns about the possible transfer of
India's expanded nuclear know-how by rogue scientists and businessmen,
said Henry Sokolski, the Defense Department's top nonproliferation
official in the George H.W. Bush administration.
As trade grows between India and Iran, so does the risk of
``transfers of technology that could be useful for Iran's purported
weapons of mass destruction,'' Sokolski said.
Indian Nuclear Export Controls and Information Security: Important
Questions Remain--ISIS Report, September 18, 2008
are indian export controls and information security congruent with the
promises and cheerleading?
(By David Albright and Paul Brannan)
The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) released a statement on September
6, 2008, outlining its conditions for allowing the transfer of nuclear
technology to India for use in IAEA safeguarded facilities. According
to the statement, the NSG ``note(d) steps that India has voluntarily
taken'' to institute ``a national export control system capable of
effectively controlling transfers of multilaterally controlled . . .
nuclear-related material, equipment and technology."
ISIS believes that important questions remain about the adequacy
and implementation of India's export control and nuclear classification
procedures. In addition, India's illicit procurement of dual-use
nuclear-related items for its unsafeguarded nuclear program belies its
commitment to the NSG.
In assessing India's nuclear procurement practices, ISIS found
several incidents where India conducted illicit nuclear trade and
leaked sensitive nuclear information.\1\ Questions about past and
current practices must be clarified as the U.S. Congress considers
final approval of U.S.-India nuclear cooperation. The two following
examples provide a basis to explore if India still leaks sensitive
centrifuge information, engages in illicit nuclear trade and whether it
will act in accordance with its promises to the NSG.
leaks of sensitive centrifuge component design drawings and inadequate
India Rare Earths (IRE), a sub-entity of India's Department of
Atomic Energy, procures sensitive materials and technology for a secret
gas centrifuge uranium enrichment plant codenamed ``Rare Materials
Project'' (RMP) outside Mysore, India. IRE uses popular technology
procurement Web sites and newspapers to solicit interested firms to
purchase bid documents. These documents can be purchased for
approximately $10 and some of them contained detailed drawings and
manufacturing instructions for direct-use centrifuge components and
other sensitive centrifuge-related items. In 2007, ISIS was easily able
to attain component design drawings for the manufacture of sensitive
centrifuge components. Figures 1, 2 and 3 show drawings for the
manufacture of bellows in a supercritical centrifuge rotor made from
maraging steel. The thin-walled rotor and bellows is considered one of
the most sensitive centrifuge parts. ISIS removed specific dimensions
and tolerances from the drawings, but otherwise did not change them.
These drawings were in documents that also provide more details on the
part's manufacture. Aside from loosely worded propriety language
stamped on some of the designs, there isn't any notation prohibiting
their export, nor any notation indicating that they are sensitive.
The level of detail in the documents is sufficient that they would
be considered classified in supplier countries and not distributed
without careful controls over their use and requirements for their
protection. India may be releasing sensitive know-how to firms that may
not intend to bid, may have forged their identity, or may be seeking
centrifuge design information for secret nuclear programs. Another
concern is that a winning bidder may be willing to manufacture and sell
the same items to other, unknown clients. Other than the loosely worded
propriety stamp on some of the drawings, any actual controls in place
to stop such additional sales could not be discerned.
illicit procurement of tributyl phosphate in india
Before April 2003, India procured from China large quantities of
tributyl phosphate (TBP), a dual-use chemical that is used in nuclear
programs to separate plutonium. China enacted new end-user requirements
after a 2002 sale of TBP to North Korea was criticized by the U.S.
government. India's subsequent attempts to procure TBP from China were
unsuccessful, according to an Indian knowledgeable about India's
procurement of TBP. India was forced to look elsewhere for a reliable
supply of TBP and utilized an array of Indian trading companies to
procure TBP secretly from suppliers in Germany and Russia according to
information provided by this Indian source. The Nuclear Fuel Complex
(NFC) in Hyderabad, India put forward tenders for buying TBP. Indian
trading companies, some of which were liaison offices for European
companies, successfully bid on these tenders and ordered the TBP from
German and Russian suppliers (see figure 4). One order for 160 metric
tonnes of TBP passed through multiple trading companies in India and
Europe. In each case, the TBP was then shipped to India with the Indian
trading companies, and not the NFC, listed as the recipient. The
trading companies then turned over the TBP to the NFC. In each
instance, the Nuclear Fuel Complex hid behind trading companies and
procured TBP without the suppliers knowing that the materials were for
the unsafeguarded nuclear program.
[From the Defense News and Army Times Publishing Co., Mar. 27, 2006]
Indian Navy Trains Iranian Sailors; U.S., India Straddle Foreign Policy
(By Vivek Raghuvanshi, New Delhi and Gopal Ratnam, Washington, DC)
While U.S. President George W. Bush was in New Delhi earlier this
month to sign a historic deal to supply nuclear fuel and technologies
to India, two Iranian warships were in Kochi, the headquarters of
Indian Navy's Southern Command, for a training program under a three-
year-old military-cooperation agreement with Tehran.
The confluence of events illustrates the fine foreign-policy lines
that U.S. and Indian officials are straddling.
The Bush administration is trying to slow Iran's nuclear-weapon
program but also seeking Tehran's help in stabilizing Iraq. New Delhi
appears to be striking a similar balance between closer strategic ties
with Washington while seeking an independent relationship with oil-
The March 3-8 visit to Kochi by the IRIS Bandar Abbas, a fleet-
supply-turned-training ship, and IRIS Lavan, an amphibious ship, was
the first Iranian naval visit to India in many years, Indian Navy
officials told local newspapers.
Indian naval instructors briefed nearly 220 Iranian sailors on the
Indian Navy's training approach and course details, said Capt. M.
Nambiar, spokesman for the Indian Navy's Southern Command.
The visit could be part of a larger Indo-Iranian naval training
program, local press reports said. In 2003, India and Iran signed a
strategic agreement to cooperate in defense and other matters. The deal
was cemented by the visit of then-Iranian President Mohammed Khatami to
the Republic Day parade in New Delhi, an honor usually reserved for key
But Indian officials tried to downplay the significance of the
ships' visit, saying that it was a routine call by foreign training
vessels at India's main naval training port.
``There is no particular significance to the timing of the call.
This was a matter decided upon through normal diplomatic channels
several months back and such visits are part of usual courtesies
extended by navies of the world to their counterparts,'' one Indian
diplomat said. ``India's cooperation with Iran in the defense field is
Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Barry Venable declined to comment on
India's training of Iranian sailors.
State Department officials also declined to comment by press time,
saying they were seeking more details about the Iranian ship visit.
concern in washington
But the India-Iran relationship is of serious concern to
policymakers in Washington.
``India's relationship with Iran is a sensitive area that will
shape how far we can go in our relationship with India, that's for
sure,'' said Michael Green, who until recently directed Asia affairs at
the White House National Security Council. Now an Asia specialist at
the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, Green
he said he didn't know details of the Iranian ship visit.
The Bush administration, citing India's democracy and fast-growing
economy, has highlighted the relationship as the cornerstone of a
strategic push to build strong ties in Asia. A recent agreement settled
by Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh would allow India to
import nuclear fuel and technologies to meet India's energy needs.
The Pentagon and the American defense industry also are hoping to
sell several billion dollars worth of high-tech weapons to India,
including fighter planes, transport and surveillance aircraft, radar
and naval vessels.
But key Members of Congress--including Senator Richard Lugar, R-
Ind., chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and
Representative Henry Hyde, R-Ill., chairman of the House International
Relations Committee--have yet to throw their support behind the
proposed nuclear agreement, which would require changes to U.S. law.
Both are staunch advocates of nonproliferation measures, and are
concerned that the proposed deal could hurt international efforts to
prevent the spread of nuclear weapons.
Former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn, another such advocate, has said the
U.S.-India nuclear cooperation could harm ``United States vital
interests'' and urged Congress not to support the deal without
India and Pakistan have been discussing proposals for a $4.5
billion pipeline to import Iranian natural gas. U.S. Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice opposed the deal at a press conference in New Delhi in
March 2005, saying it would encourage Tehran to defy the international
But Indian officials refused to abandon the project, and the White
House has apparently changed its mind.
``Our beef with Iran is not the pipeline,'' Bush said in Islamabad
March 4. ``Our beef with Iran is, in fact, they want to develop a
nuclear weapon, and I believe a nuclear weapon in the hands of the
Iranians will be very dangerous for all of us.''
India reversed a long-standing position of its own in recent
months by supporting Washington's effort to send the issue of Iran's
nuclear-weapon program to the U.N. Security Council.
A top national-security official in India's previous government
urged New Delhi to balance its ties to Washington and its neighborhood.
``India, by forging nuclear cooperation ties with the United
States, should not adopt an American line on dealing with Iran,'' said
Brijesh Mishra, who was national security adviser in the National
Democratic Alliance government led by Prime Minister Atal Behari
Mishra said ties to Iran could secure oil for energy-thirsty India
as well as be ``an important gateway'' to improving relations with
central Asian states.
India's vote against Iran ``got the government into trouble with
its own communist party allies'' who saw it as a betrayal of the
county's policies, said Salman Haidar, a senior fellow at the U.S.
Institute of Peace, Washington, and a former foreign secretary of
The current government, led by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, is
supported by communist parties known for their anti-American views.
Countries seeking closer relationship with the United States
always face the problem of balancing their regional interests with
those of Washington, Haidar said.
``India's strategic interest drives us toward Iran, but a
different strategic calculation makes us wary of Iran. But we are
certainly not going to treat Iran as a hostile power. If there is
military action against Iran, I would not be surprised if India stays
away from it. Not being looked upon as an American auxiliary is
important for India. That's the way we are going.''
[From Defense News, Mar. 19, 2007]
India, Iran Form Joint Group To Deepen Defense Ties
(By Vivek Raghuvanshi, New Delhi)
Iran and India agreed earlier this month to form a joint defense
working group, which will meet later this year in Tehran to prepare a
road map for defense cooperation, officials from both countries said.
The working group will mostly evaluate Tehran's request that India
train some military personnel, Indian Defence Ministry sources said.
The agreement, which follows the broader strategic partnership
accord the two countries signed in 2003, emerged from high-level talks
held here during the March 4-9 visit of Rear Adm. Sajjad Kouchaki
Badelani, commander of Iran's Navy.
Iranian diplomats here said Badelani's visit will spur defense
cooperation, which had been low-key despite the strategic agreement.
Under the 2003 accord, India agreed to provide Iran's military with
hardware, training, maintenance and modernization.
``Badelani was in India last week at the invitation of Adm. Sureesh
Mehta, chief of staff of the Indian Navy,'' an Indian Navy official
said. ``Iran and India are neighbors with deep civilization, cultural
and people-to-people links.''
Badelani's visit was the first top-level contact between the two
navies since former Indian Navy Chief Madhvendra Singh visited Iran in
2003. The Iranian admiral met with Defence Minister A.K. Antony,
Defence Secretary Shekhar Dutt, Air Force Chief Air Marshal S.P. Tyagi
and Army Vice Chief Lt. Gen. Deepak Kapoor, Indian Defence Ministry
Badelani visited the Indian Navy's diving and submarine training
schools at Visakhapatnam, and its navigation, signal and maritime
warfare training schools at the Kochi base. Two Iranian naval ships on
a training sortie visited Kochi in March 2006.
The Iranian delegation suggested exchanging warship engineers but
no decision was reached, Defence Ministry sources said.
Navy officials said Badelani's visit will stregthen the traditional
relations between India and Iran and help the Indian Navy build
alliances to secure regional sea lanes and cooperate on other maritime
``We have tremendous interest in the Persian Gulf because of energy
resources, and India would like to have stability in the Persian
Gulf,'' said defense analyst Gurpreet Khurana of the Institute of
Defence Studies and Analysis, based here.
Sources in the Indian Ministry of Petroleum said construction of an
1,100-kilometer gas pipeline from Iran through Pakistan to India is in
the final stages.
Badelani's visit followed New Delhi's ban on the export to Iran of
all items, materials, equipment, goods and technology that could
contribute to its nuclear enrichment program. India imposed the ban in
February in compliance with a December's U.N. Security Council