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India, Iran discuss bilateral relations

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New Delhi, Jan 9 (IANS) India and Iran discussed key bilateral issues during a meeting between External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif here on Wednesday. 


"Held wide ranging discussion on important bilateral issues and shared perspectives on the regional situation," External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted following the meeting.

Iran is a major supplier of oil to India which had been jeopardised after Washington put fresh sanctions on Tehran.

The US pulled out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that Tehran signed with the five permanent members (P5) of the UN Security Council, Germany and the European Union and imposed the new sanctions on Iran over its alleged nuclear programme. This sparked concerns in New Delhi.

However, Washington had temporarily exempted New Delhi from its sanctions on Tehran oil imports and development of the Chabahar Port on the southeastern coast of Iran.

The port is being jointly developed by India, Iran and Afghanistan. New Delhi is investing $500 million to develop it and a road link from there to Afghanistan to give access to that country, bypassing Pakistan.

The port is also a key link in the International North South Transport Corridor, a 7,200 km-long multi-modal network of ship, rail and road routes to move freight between India, Iran, Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia, Central Asia and Europe.


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