India, Belarus decide to set up joint commission to enhance defense ties

New Delhi, April 17, IRNA

India and Belarus decided to set up a joint commission on military technical cooperation to enhance defense ties, beside signing an Extradition Treaty.

The treaty was inked at the end of delegation level talks between the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and the visiting President of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko in New Delhi Monday evening.

An agreement to enhance cooperation in the field of agriculture was also signed. A program of cooperation between the two nations in the field of culture, arts, education and mass media for two years was also inked besides an executive program in the field of science and technology.

A protocol on the accession of Belarus to the WTO was also signed.

According to a joint statement issued after the talks, the two sides decided to set up a joint commission on military technical cooperation to enhance defense ties.

Both sides called upon all member states of Untied Nations to conclude convention on international terrorism to deal with the menace decisively which is posing a great threat to the world peace and stability.

The two countries expressed their intention to broaden and strengthen cooperation in the field of peaceful uses of atomic energy.

Belarus pledged to work with the governments of nuclear supplies group to create conditions for cooperation with India in this field.

On the international situation, Belarus reaffirmed its support for India for its candidature as a permanent of the UN Security Council and agreed on the need to accelerate the process of UN reforms reflecting ground realities.

The leaders of the two countries called for strengthening the Non-Aligned Movement, the commonality of positions of the member countries in the UNO and other international organizations.

On the Palestinian issue the two leaders expressed the hope that it will be resolved through peaceful negotiations resulting in an independent state of Palestine within recognized and well defined borders. They maintained this has to be achieved by Palestine living at peace with Israel and in tune with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions within a reasonable time frame.

On Iraq, they called for promoting peace, stability and economic reconstruction.

President of Belarus, during his two day visit to New Delhi, met his Indian counterpart Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, Vice President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat and External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

The Belarus president who arrived here Sunday evening, accompanied by a level business delegation also participated in the fourth meeting of India-Belarus Joint Business Council. The meeting organized by Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) was attended by leading businessmen of both the countries.