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* Sri Lanka, India agree to strengthen nuclear cooperation
Fri, Oct 12, 2012, 07:22 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Oct 12, New Delhi: Sri Lanka and India today held the first round of talks between the two countries on comprehensive civil nuclear cooperation in New Delhi and agreed to strengthen bilateral nuclear cooperation , a joint statement issued by the two countries said.

During the discussions, held in a warm, friendly and cordial manner, both sides have exchanged views on all aspects of civil nuclear cooperation. Discussions also included training of officials, nuclear safety and response to nuclear accidents.

Responding to concerns raised by Sri Lanka over the commissioning of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in the state of Tamil Nadu, India last month offered to discuss safety features of the reactor with Sri Lanka.

India has earlier assured that the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant is a state-of-the-art plant that is compliant with the highest safety standards available in the nuclear industry and the safety measures instituted at the plant are of the highest order.

During today's discussions the two sides have reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the uses of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes to mutually benefit the people of the two countries.

The Indian delegation was led by Harsh Vardhan Shringla, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India and included representatives from the Department of Atomic Energy of India.

The Sri Lankan delegation was led by I. Ansar, Additional Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of Sri Lanka and included representatives from the Atomic Energy Authority and the Ministry of Power and Energy of Sri Lanka.

Both countries have agreed to work towards a comprehensive Agreement on Bilateral Civil Nuclear Cooperation.

The next joint meeting is scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka in the first half of 2013.

** Related Story :: India to discuss nuclear plant safety with Sri Lanka

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