US Threatens Sanctions on Pakistan Over Gas Pipeline

Insists Pipeline to Iran Would Be 'Sanctionable'

The IP gas pipeline, an ambitious plan initially introduced in 1989 and which would potentially be a big step in finally solving Pakistan’s long-standing energy crisis, looks to finally get underway this month. But not if the US gets its way.

The US State Department has issued a statement today insisting that building a pipeline to Iran from which to import natural gas was in and of itself a “sanctionable” offense, which the US considers wholly unacceptable.

Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said that the US intended to help Pakistan overcome its energy crisis, but that actually importing energy from a neighbor with a surplus was not the right way to go about it.

The US has repeatedly made such threats over the past several years, and has repeatedly promised energy aid if the plan was scrapped. That energy aid never seems to materialize however, and after stalling the plan for years, Pakistan seems set to go ahead with it.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.