Japanese coalition party leader for nuclear cooperation with India

New Delhi, Jan 6 : A key ally of Japan's ruling coalition Monday announced support to the India-Japan nuclear cooperation talks, saying they should be "accelerated".

Natsuo Yamaguchi, chief of Japan's New Komeito Party, a junior partner of the Liberal Democratic Party-led ruling coalition, said here that there should be a "flexible approach" to the issue of nuclear cooperation.

"We are part of the ruling coalition.. we have no major difference of opinion on the subject.. (of India-Japan nuclear cooperation.) The talks should be accelerated," Yamaguchi told journalists here ahead of the visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to India later this month.

Yamaguchi, whose Komeito Party is for phasing out of all nuclear reactors in Japan in the wake of the Fukushima disaster and earlier the Hiroshima bombing, said there were two-three aspects of nuclear tech cooperation - nuclear non proliferation, Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) and safe disposal of nuclear waste.

"These are areas of concern... but we must remain realistic.. cooperation is possible, we must have a flexible approach," he said.

Yamaguchi said during his talks with Vice President Hamid Ansari and External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid he had discussed India-Japan bilateral relations.

With Khurshid, the Japanese MP evinced interest in pushing ahead with setting up of a Peace Studies Institute at the proposed Nalanda University, an international school of higher learning, in Bihar's Rajgir area.

On the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), a $90 billion project aimed at creating mega industrial infrastructure along the Delhi-Mumbai Rail Freight Corridor, which is under implementation, Yamaguchi said he had discussed the project with DMIC head Amitabh Kant and parts of the first phase would be implemented by 2017.

Yamaguchi is also to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, during which he would discuss all aspects of India-Japan relations as well as the ongoing tensions between Japan and China in the East China Sea.

--IANS (Posted on 06-01-2014)

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