Won’t you buy oil from us, Iran asks India amidst US sanctions
Tehran, July 03: Amid US sanctions, Iran said it believes India will act in its national interest on the issue of oil imports and Tehran can act as a "protector" of India's energy security. Iran's Ambassador to India Ali Chegeni also asserted that his country can provide "affordability, accessability and security" of energy to India.
The Iranian envoy also alluded to the possibility of using barter, rupee and European mechanisms for trade in oil with India and other countries to circumvent the US sanctions.
His remarks assume significance as they come days after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had assured India that America is "doing everything" to ensure crude oil imports to New Delhi in the wake of the situation arising out of sanctions on importing oil from Iran.
Pompeo had said India has made "hard choices" to cut off oil imports from Iran.
Referring to External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar's remarks at the joint press interaction with Pompeo here last week, Chegeni said: "If Mr. Jaishankar said affordability, accessability and security of energy. Iran is the only country that can provide all these aspects of energy for India."
"We expect from a friend... that we understand each other, follow our national interest and Iran is ready for being the protector of energy security of India," he told reporters on the sidelines of a Iran-India cultural event here.
Chegeni said that probably the oil import may have been stopped but Iran had not got any "negative signal" from India that they would do so in future.
"India is a friend forever. We understand that India will act according to its national interest. As we understand from Mr. Jaishankar's statement that India will follow its national interest. That is acceptable for everybody," he said.