Sanya (China), Apr 13: In the backdrop of nuclear radiation fears in Japan after a tsunami, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev today discussed the need for reviewing safety mechanisms of atomic reactors of the two countries besides pushing for safety reviews of such facilities at international level.
Meeting for the second time in four months, Singh and Medvedev also discussed ways to push the unique bilateral strategic partnership that covers a wide range of issues, including energy, defence, space and trade and economy.
Briefing reporters, National Security Adviser Shivshankar Menon said the two leaders discussed the recent events in Japan which was hit by a massive earthquake and tsunami triggering radiation threats at a damaged nuclear plant.
Considering that India and Russia have active cooperation in the civil nuclear field, the two leaders discussed the need for international efforts to “re-examine nuclear safety standards and see what can be done internationally besides the internal reviews that both the countries have put in place” in response to the Fukushima episode.
“We will go through this process together. We are examining this,” Menon said.
He said the two leaders were of the view that despite the concerns, there is no sound alternative economically or environmentally to nuclear energy if security is ensured.
Menon pointed out that India and Russia already have certain agreements related to reactor technology in place and they would ascertain whether there is a need to review these. Medvedev recalled his visit to India in December and said it was useful and productive.
He said the BRICS Summit had provided a good opportunity for them to discuss the status of world economy, international problems and bilateral issues. Singh said BRIC got its shape due to zeal of Russia which hosted the first Summit.
“In the last three years, the world has changed in many ways. There are many challenges facing us. The more I think of them, the more convinced I am that the partnership can strengthen the forces of peace and stability,” Singh said.
The two leaders also discussed ways in which the relationship in the field of hydrocarbons could be taken forward.
Singh and Medvedev also discussed international issues like the developments in West Asia and North Africa which have effects on energy security. Deliberations on this will take place further during the BRICS Summit tomorrow. PTI