India under attack as high drama mars climate summit
India under attack as high drama mars climate summit Copenhagen: India and China came under a concerted attack from rich nations Monday for a three-hour suspension of the Dec 7-18 climate summit, though an Indian government delegate denied that the country had anything to do with it. The fracas occurred at an "informal" session of the summit called by the host, Denmark's Environment Minister Connie Hedegaard, in an effort to get at least a meaningful "political declaration" from the 192 countries gathered here. The group of African countries walked out of the session, with Kamel Djemouai, the Algerian representative at the talks, saying Hedegaard's attempts would mean "death of the Kyoto Protocol", the current international treaty to tackle climate change. Algeria is the current chair of the Africa group. Delegates from the US and some European countries promptly said India and China had "engineered" the walkout, and some of them said Indian and Chinese delegates had walked out too. This was promptly reported by developed country media, leading to much confusion among the 3,000-plus journalists gathered here to cover the summit. But a senior member of the Indian delegation denied that India had walked out or had "put up" the African countries to stage a walkout. After three hours of intense closed-door negotiations, the "informal" session restarted. But all this drama once again pushed back any chance of any strong outcome at Copenhagen, with rich countries still refusing any significant cuts in their emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) - which are warming the planet - or to put any meaningful amount of money on the table to help poor countries cope with climate change effects.