Washington, Feb 18: Noting that international pressure on Iran is beginning to pinch, US has said it was holding talks with India, Pakistan, Russia and China, who still do business with Tehran, to implement the existing sanctions, particularly to "wean" them from Iranian crude.
"We are engaged in conversations with all of these governments with regard to the importance of implementing existing international sanctions, national sanctions, and also doing what they can to increase sanctions, particularly to wean themselves from Iranian crude," State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland said.
She was replying to a question on how the US will enforce the existing sanctions against Iran when countries like India, Pakistan, Russia and China were still doing business with the Islamic Republic. "So this is a process, it's still going on.
But as the Secretary (of State Hillary Clinton) said today, we do assess that the pressure, economic and diplomatic, on Iran is beginning to pinch. And you see the fruit of that, and the fact that we after many months, have Iran suggesting that we go back to the table."
The UN Security Council has imposed a series of sanctions against Iran, with countries like the US and the UK also imposing unilateral sanctions against the country for its alleged nuclear weapons programme. India has been resisting pressure from the US to cut off trade ties with Iran, and is looking at various mechanisms like rupee payment and increasing export to pay for its oil import.