Iran’s deputy foreign minister Asia, Oceania and Commonwealth, Dr Mehdi Safari is visiting India to appraise India of its position over the nuclear stand-off with the West reiterating that it is open to negotiations and diplomatic solution. Meeting Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran and the National Security Advisor M.K. Narayanan, Safari said his country wants to work through the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) but will not accept any pre-conditions.
India said that Iran should avoid confrontation as it can only destabilize the region even more and while Iran should enjoy all benefits of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), it should also honor its commitments. India also reiterated that it is against coercion.
Safari visit is more than a month after Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki’s scheduled visit was cancelled because of Israel’s invasion of Lebanon. Apparently, this visit was initiated by Tehran and New Delhi would have rather not have this visit without a clear solution on the standoff.
Press releases did not talk about the other issues that the two sides may have discussed such as the failed LNG deal, disagreement on pricing of the Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline, or broadening relations beyond the nuclear and fossil fuel issues.