India, Iran pledge to continue gas pipeline project

India and Iran will continue working on the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline, said Navtej Sarna, spokesman of the Indian External Affairs Ministry, in New Delhi Thursday.

Sarna made the remark after visiting Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Mehdi Safari met with top Indian officials, including Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran and National Security Adviser M.K. Narayanan, here Thursday.

They reaffirmed their commitment to the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline and an early ratification of the LNG deal already signed between the two countries, he said.

This is the first high profile bilateral talks since India voted at a International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) meeting early this month for the resolution to report Iran to the UN Security Council for its alleged violations of the Nuclear Non- Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

"The two sides had a comprehensive review of bilateral relations, and agreed to continue cooperation in all areas of mutual interest and benefit, including in the energy field," Sarna said.

India's stance on the Iran nuclear issue has roused worries about the future of the Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline and the deal to sell 5 million tons of natural gas annually to India.

Source: Xinhua

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