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France, India negotiate arms and trade deals

France hopes to clinch new arms and trade deals with India after the two countries settled differences over French nuclear fuel supplies for the US-built Tarapur power plant north of Bombay.

A French presidential spokesman said new Indian orders for Mirage 2000 combat planes and other civilian and military equipment could emerge from ministerial talks during French President Mitterrand's visit to India.

Only hours before the visit, France agreed to replace the US as the supplier of enriched uranium to the power plant. Agreement had been held up because of French insistence on stringent international safeguards.

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