US law­mak­ers ques­tion In­dia’s Chaba­har port deal with Iran

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Reuters ht­metro@hin­dus­tan­times.com

WASH­ING­TON: US se­na­tors ques­tioned on Tues­day whether In­dia’s de­vel­op­ment of a port in south­ern Iran for trade ac­cess risked vi­o­lat­ing in­ter­na­tional sanc­tions, while a State Depart­ment of­fi­cial as­sured them the ad­min­is­tra­tion will closely ex­am­ine the project.

Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi on Mon­day pledged up to $500 mil­lion to de­velop the Ira­nian port of Chaba­har, to try to give his coun­try trade ac­cess to Iran, Afghanistan and Cen­tral Asia. The route is cur­rently all but blocked by Pak­istan, long at odds po­lit­i­cally with In­dia.

“We have been very clear with the In­di­ans (about) con­tin­u­ing re­stric­tions on ac­tiv­i­ties with re­spect to Iran,” Nisha De­sai Biswal, as­sis­tant sec­re­tary of state for South and Cen­tral Asian Af­fairs, said on Tues­day.

“We have to ex­am­ine the de­tails of the Chaba­har an­nounce­ment to see where it falls in that place,” she tes­ti­fied to the Sen­ate For­eign Re­la­tions Com­mit­tee. CON­TIN­UED ON P11

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