Text of US-India Agreement Has Been Kept Under Wraps Since Signing

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representative Edward J. Markey (D-MA), made the following statement today in anticipation of the release of the text of the so-called “123 agreement” for nuclear cooperation with India. Last week, though the Bush administration acknowledged that they had reached a deal with India, they continued to refuse to release details.

“If press reports are accurate, the Bush administration will soon be releasing the text of the agreement for nuclear cooperation with India, after withholding it for the past two weeks. Though I am glad that the administration has finally decided to release the text, the choice to release it at the end of the week, as Congress is occupied with finishing a raft of pressing legislation before returning home during August, suggests an intent to bury a poorly crafted agreement in a busy news cycle.

“The administration is well aware of the fact that this agreement will be under a microscope once Congress gets a chance to look at it. And the Congress will have considerable time to dissect the details, since congressional consideration will not occur until India has negotiated an India-IAEA safeguards agreement and secured a rule-change at the Nuclear Suppliers Group. We will be particularly interested in whether this agreement is consistent with U.S. law, and I look forward to getting started on this crucial oversight.

“I am particularly eager for Congress to begin seriously investigating the growing military and economic ties between India and Iran. These ties are at the very least are inconsistent with India’s pledges to assist the United States internationally and at worst a serious impediment to our goal of ending Iran’s dangerous nuclear program. The Congress must hold hearings on the question of India’s deepening relations with Iran, because we cannot go forward with this agreement, an enormous gift to India, if they are courting one of our most serious adversaries.”


August 2, 2007

CONTACT: Jessica Schafer (Markey), 202.225.2836