File photo of US President Donald Trump. Photograph:( Reuters )
India, the world's third-largest importer of oil, gets about 10% of its oil from Iran. The US has been leaning on India to stop.
On Wednesday Donald Trump said "India is going to find out" whether it will be sanctioned for its purchase of the S-400 Triumf missile defence sytem from Russia.
And a day later, US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert quoted him as saying "we'll take care of that" on the question of India buying oil from Iran.
The US, which imposed sanctions on Iran after Trump walked out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, has been leaning on India to stop importing oil from Iran.
India has so far said that it will continue to buy oil from Iran. (India, which is the world's third largest importer of oil, gets about 10 per cent of its oil from Iran.)
"The President had addressed it. He was asked whether or not India would buy oil from Iran after sanctions are reimposed and president said 'we’ll take care of that'," US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said on Thursday.
The President had addressed it, he was asked whether or not India would buy oil from Iran after sanctions are reimposed. And President said, 'we’ll take care of that.' He was asked also about CAATSA sanctions&possible imposition of CAATSA sanctions: Heather Nauert, US State Dept pic.twitter.com/hJeJ7BLY0q— ANI (@ANI) October 12, 2018
"He was asked also about CAATSA sanctions and possible imposition of CAATSA sanctions," Nauert added.
"And he (US President) said, India is going to find out. And India will find out. We’ll see. So I’m not going to get ahead of him, but certainly when we hear about things such as purchasing oil or purchasing of the S-400 systems, it’s not helpful," she said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi signed a deal during Russian President Vladimir Putin's recent visit to India to buy five units of the S-400. The deal will cost India over $5 billion.
India plans to use the defence sytem along its border with China.
The trouble is the purchase could attract US sanctions under the Countering America's Adversaries Throught Sanctions Act or CAATSA which says the US has to sanction any country which buys a significant portion of its military firepower from Russia. (The US was also keen that India buy its Thaad missile defence system rather than the S-400.)
India has asked that the sanctions be waived.