India should not buy an ounce of Iranian oil: Romney Campaign

By The Economic Times

WASHINGTON: Highly critical of Obama Administration’s decision to exempt India and China from sanctions for importing Iranian oil, a senior defence advisor to Romney Campaign today said that New Delhi should not buy even an ounce of oil from Iran.

“India is a good friend. It’s an ally. We understand that India has a long relationship with Iran. But if India is still importing oil, it should stop. As simple as that,” Dr Dov Zakheim, said during a breakfast meeting with Defence Writers Group.

“There are other ways to get the oil,” Zakheim said when pointed out the huge energy needs that India has for its billion plus population.

India should look at other alternatives and should stop buying oil from Iran, he insisted.

“At the end of the day, it’s not in India’s interest for Iran to get nuclear weapon, even to think of getting a nuclear weapon, because all that would do is to get the Pakistanis, who do not like the Iranians as you know, build even more nuclear weapons,” he said.

“So ultimately it is a huge danger for India. As friend of India… let me say I first came to Delhi in 1981… I can say that it is not in India’s long term interest to buy one ounce of oil from this Iranian regime.

India currently imports about 8-9 per cent of its oil needs from Iran, a figure which has come down from a year ago figure of 12 per cent.

The US in June had extended exemptions from its tough, new sanctions on Iran’s oil trade to seven countries including India.


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