Western Double Standards On Iran-Pakistan Cooperation – OpEd

Former Pakistani Minister of Information and Broadcasting Fawad Ahmed Hussain Chaudhry has called on Western countries to end their double standard regarding Pakistan’s cooperation with Iran, particularly on a joint gas pipeline project between the two neighbors.

In an exclusive interview with IRNA, Chaudhry argued that Pakistan should not be prevented from benefiting from its neighborly relations with Iran and the opportunity to resolve its energy crisis.

He criticized the West’s unilateral sanctions against Iran, which he said have nothing to do with the cooperation between Tehran and Islamabad.

“Either the West must be accountable for overcoming the energy crisis in Pakistan, or it must refrain from the double standard towards Islamabad’s bilateral collaborations with Tehran,” he asserted.

Chaudhry emphasized that the Iran-Pakistan joint gas project is the best option to address Pakistan’s energy crisis, but the illegal sanctions Washington has imposed on Iran continue to hinder its finalization.

He also praised the role of late Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in enhancing bilateral ties between Iran and Pakistan, describing his visit to Pakistan as being “of great importance.”

In June 2009, Pakistan and Iran entered into a Gas Sales and Purchase Agreement for a pipeline intended to transport gas from Iran’s South Pars Field to energy-hungry Pakistan. The pipeline was designed to supply between 750 million and 1,000 million cubic feet of gas per day.

Iran reported the completion of its section of the pipeline in 2011. However, construction on the Pakistani side has faced repeated delays. The US has been pressuring the new Pakistani administration to refrain from picking up on the project.

Pakistan is currently facing a severe energy crisis resulting from a gap between energy supplies and demands in the country.

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