Monday, April 5, 2010

India snubs U.S. warning over gas pipeline from Iran

WASHINGTON and NEW DELHI - Denying any U.S. pressure on its ties with Iran, India has decided to nominate its ambassador to participate in a meeting on nuclear disarmament in Tehran, and further stressed that it has not shut its door on the proposed Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project.
Four days after a Nuclear Security Summit in the U.S., Iran, under escalating international pressure over its nuclear program, will be hosting a two-day conference beginning April 17 on nuclear disarmament and is seeking India’s support for the initiative.
India’s Ambassador to Iran Sanjay Singh will participate in the April 17-18 Tehran meeting on nuclear disarmament entitled “Nuclear Energy for All, Nuclear Weapons for None.”
Further, India said it has not withdrawn from the proposed $7.5 billion tri-nation IPI gas pipeline, well-placed sources said on April 3.
“We haven’t shut the door on dialogue. Besides pricing and security issues, the volatile situation in Pakistan also has a bearing on the project,” a source said.
In March, Iran and Pakistan signed a bilateral pact on the pipeline project, but left the door open for India to join in at a later stage.
Underlining India’s ties with Iran, the sources pointed out that Tehran is important for New Delhi not just for energy but also for strategic reasons in Afghanistan.
The source also denied any American pressure on India to scale down its ties with Iran, saying New Delhi’s ties with Tehran stand independently of its relations with other countries.

No comments:

Post a Comment