Washington, D.C. -- Today the House International Relations Committee passed a version of the President’s proposed U.S-India Nuclear deal.  Rep. Ed Markey, the co-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force on Nonproliferation, released the following statement on the bill that was approved by the committee:

“While the legislation that the House International Relations Committee approved today is an improvement over the President’s original bill, it still contains glaring loopholes which will free India to enhance its nuclear weapons capacity.  The Committee failed its responsibility to safeguard American national security by refusing to bar assistance a foreign nuclear weapons program.”

“The single most important condition, which would have resulted in India ceasing production of fissile material for weapons, was rejected.  The only way to ensure that U.S. nuclear assistance to India does not in any way contribute to their weapons program is through a fissile material cut-off.  Unfortunately, the committee unwisely voted against such a measure.”

“By giving India the capacity to dramatically ramp up its bomb-making program, we have taken the first steps towards igniting a nuclear arms race in Asia.”

“I support the blossoming of relations between the United States and India that the Administration is currently seeking.  But our relationship with India can be transformed without sacrificing the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and our national security.”

June 27, 2006

CONTACT: Israel Klein