Nuclear deal is India's passport to the world: Bush

George W Bush Addressing the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit, former US president George W Bush said that N-deal shows that US recognises India's nuclear programme. He said that the deal will empower the Indian economy and added that it is called India's passport to the world.

Speaking at the Summit, the former US President also said that during his tenure India was his priority in foreign policy and added that he saw India coming as big force long back and wanted America to pay attention.

Discussing the issue of terrorism, Bush said that both US and India were engaged in an ideological battle against extremists who kill innocents.

He said 9/11 in US and 26/11 in India gave both the nations clarity to tackle such acts of terror. The extremists hate our vision of human rights, prosperity and peace, he added.

On the issue of India's entry into the United Nations Security Council, Bush said he supports India's claim for a permanent berth and wants US to back India's claim.

Talking about his relations with Prime Minsiter Manmohan Singh, Bush said, "I like your PM. He is a wise leader and really good man and I am proud to call him a friend."

Expressing his love for India, Bush said that his life has changed after retirement, but not his love for India. "America feels special kinship with the people of largest democracy," he said.

Bush also said that America welcomes more students from India than any other country.

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