Isolated Iran still happy to talk gas pipeline

Vol 10, PW 19 (25 Jan 07) News in Brief

Iran’s international isolation is having no impact on talks with India and Pakistan.

This week (24th, 25th January) officials from the three countries are meeting in Tehran for renewed negotiations on the price of Iranian gas delivered to India and Pakistan through a proposed overland pipeline. Under scrutiny is a gas-pricing report received in December from the Singapore offices of UK consultant Gaffney Cline & Associates.

India and Pakistan as joint buyers of the gas are likely to adopt a joint approach. “This is natural as the interests of the buyers coincide,â€‌ we are told.

Exactly a month ago on 23rd December the UN Security Council unanimously voted to impose a watered down list of sanctions against Iran in protest at its nuclear enrichment programme. India’s Ministry of External Affairs responded cautiously to the move, saying: “Iran has the right to pursue its nuclear programme for peaceful civilian use.

â€‌ Additional secretary Anil Razdan is leading the Indian delegation to Iran.