Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Pipeline under Pressure

Now, if this earlier discussion is not vindicated by this news, what would it take?
Pakistan Stressed by US Designs on Iran

KARACHI, Apr 24 (IPS) - As the crisis around Iran over its alleged nuclear ambitions assumes an ugly shape, Pakistan finds itself once again, under enormous political pressure because of aggressive United States policy towards a Muslim country in its immediate neighbourhood.


And now the U.S. is pressing both Pakistan and India to forego the economically advantageous Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project and think of other ways of meeting their energy requirements.

Already the U.S. has told the Pakistan government that it can expect funding and other assistance if the alternate Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan oil pipeline project is pursued and the Iran project abandoned.

India is being persuaded by Washington to give up the Iran gas deal, in return for cooperation on civilian nuclear technology. Indian participation in the project would make the pipeline more attractive for Pakistan in terms of an annual 700 million dollars in royalties.
If they have not done so yet, Iran, Pakistan and India are close to inking the $7 billion pipeline deal, a deal the Bush administration sorely does not want to come to fruition. I cannot help but be curious to know if some of those targets being scoped out in Iran might not be a few ... natural gas plants; plants that would help supply gas to this pipeline.


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