US wants to wean India from Iranian crude

After imposing three new sanctions against Iran, the US is now holding talks with India, Pakistan, Russia and China about what they can do to "wean" from Iranian crude.

"We are engaged in conversations with all of these governments with regard to the importance of implementing existing international, national sanctions," the US state department spokesperson, Victoria Nuland, told reporters on Friday.

But as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Friday, "we do assess that the economic and diplomatic pressure on Iran is beginning to pinch them. And you see the fruit of that, and the fact that we, after many months, have Iran suggesting that we go back to the table," Nuland said.

Asked about Pakistan's decision to go ahead with the construction of the gas pipeline between Iran and Pakistan, she said, "We have issues of concern and we've been very clear about those with the government of Pakistan. We think it's a bad idea; we've made that clear."

On Israel blaming Iran's Quds Force for a string of attacks on Israeli diplomats in India, Georgia and Thailand, Nuland said, "I think, we are still where we are, that we wouldn't be surprised if the fingerprints and the trail lead back to Iran. However, we're not in a position to assess until the investigations of the host governments are complete."


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