Blair kudos for India
Tony Blair praises India even as he rains on North Korea's nuclear parade.
BY OUR POLITICS CORRESPONDENT
October 10, 2006
Belligerent N Korea or N-India? Choosing between the two doesn’t seem to be tough for Tony Blair. The British Prime Minister feels that North Korea’s belligerence is beyond comparison when it comes to weighing nuke nations like India.
Blairspeak has made Manmohan Singh happy too, prompting him to say that there is no parallel between India's policy and what is happening in North Korea.
When Blair and Singh came up together on to the podium on Tuesday for a joint media meets, it was all talk of nuclear weapons. Blair went on and on saying that countries like India and Britain shared democratic values while North Korea did not. North Korea is in total breach of its international obligations whereas a country like India has been very strong on counter-proliferation," Blair asserted with a beaming Manmohan by his side.
The British PM went on: India is very strong on democratic procedures. North Korea is in the opposite direction. The tragedy of North Korea is not just the nuclear tests. It is what is happening in North Korea where people are literally living in oppression and mass poverty and starvation while they spend millions of dollars on nuclear weapons.
Garnering more ammo from Tony Blair’s assertions, Manmohan too did not mince words. Describing North Korea’s belligerence as a violation of its international commitments, the Indian PM said New Delhi had backed the six-party talks on North Korea which was aimed at achieving the democratization of the Korean peninsula. He added: “We do not support the emergence of another nuclear weapon state. North Korea's tests highlight the dangers of clandestine proliferation. India's own security has suffered due to proliferation emanating from our neighbourhood."
Then came the obvious question. If Britain can have nukes, why not North Korea? Blair had a readymade answer for this query too. “The difference between a country like Britain and a country like India and a country like North Korea is that we are democracies, we abide by the rule of law, and we abide by our international obligations... North Korea is doing none of these things.”