Iran General NewsIndia-Iran gas pipeline talks to go ahead

India-Iran gas pipeline talks to go ahead

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Reuters: India will go ahead with talks to buy natural gas from Iran via a multi-billion-dollar pipeline despite objections from the United States, Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee said on Monday. NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India will go ahead with talks to buy natural gas from Iran via a multi-billion-dollar pipeline despite objections from the United States, Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee said on Monday.

India and neighbouring Pakistan are in talks with Iran to buy gas to be supplied through the proposed $7 billion cross-country pipeline, a deal opposed by the United States which says the project will help fund Tehran’s development of nuclear weapons.

“Talks are going on,” Mukherjee told the NDTV news network in an interview. “When I was in Iran, I mentioned it categorically that we are interested in having this gas pipeline. Now negotiations are going on about the prices,” he said when asked about Washington’s objections.

Oil Minister Murli Deora said on Saturday New Delhi would not be pressured into cancelling its plans, adding that talks were at a very early stage and that “some people” were trying to bring politics into the issue.

Last week, U.S. Energy Secretary Sam Bodman, during a three-day visit to India, expressed Washington’s displeasure with India’s decision to buy gas from Iran saying it would help fund Tehran’s development of nuclear weapons.

The United States and its allies say Iran is secretly developing nuclear weapons, and the United Nations Security Council on Saturday slapped arms and financial sanctions on the Islamic nation because of its atomic programme.

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