The federal government has failed to serve Australia’s national interest or observe responsible nuclear policy by dismissing a clear call to put the brakes on uranium sales to India, the Australian Conservation Foundation said today.

In September the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties delivered its report into the controversial sales plan, following a detailed examination of the costs and benefits.

The Committee, which was government-controlled and included Labor and Greens representatives, made a clear and united recommendation for Australia not to supply uranium to India at this time or under the terms of the proposed nuclear co-operation treaty.

The Committee outlined a series of practical steps needed to address safety, security and legal uncertainty as a pre-condition to any exports of uranium to India.

But yesterday the federal government dismissed these concerns stating “the Government does not accept the Committee’s recommendation that exports of uranium to India should be deferred”.

“Putting the promise of profit for the uranium companies ahead of addressing the documented dangers for the wider community in India and beyond is deficient, derelict and dangerous,” said ACF campaigner Dave Sweeney.

“The government’s response to JSCOT’s measured report is predictable, tired and indefensible.

“This ill-conceived deal is a long way from a done deal and will be actively contested.”

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Journalists with enquiries may contact Tom Arup on 0402 482 910, tom.arup@acf.org.au; or Toby Halligan on 0419 403 016, toby.halligan@acf.org.au For all other enquiries please call 1800 223 669 or email action@acf.org.au.