Pak: Will go by US sanctions on Iran

Pakistan will abide by any US sanctions on Iran, which Washington has warned could hit Pakistani companies involved in a $7.6 billion Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline deal, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani said on Monday. Gilani's remarks came as Iran banned two UN nuclear inspectors from entering the country.

On Sunday, US special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke had warned Islamabad against becoming too committed to the project because of the expected sanctions' effects. "If the US imposes sanctions, they will have international implications and Pakistan as a member of the international community will follow them," Gilani told reporters in Sindh province.

Following the warning by the US, Pakistan has said it will not violate international law but, hoped the multi-million dollar deal with Iran would not come under the ambit of fresh sanctions on Tehran.

Iran said on Monday that it has banned two UN nuclear inspectors from entering the country because they disclosed to the media the contents of a "false" report on the country's disputed nuclear programme before the UN nuclear watchdog reviewed it.

A report posted on the website of the state broadcasting company quoted Ali Akbar Salehi, head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization, as saying the IAEA has been informed of the decision to ban the inspectors, whom he did not identify.

Earlier this month, Salehi rejected the report by the agency as "false with the purpose of influencing public opinion".

IAEA experts in May revisited the site — the Jaber Ibn Hayan Multipurpose Research Laboratory in Tehran — only to find out that the electrochemical cell had been "removed" from the unit used in the experiments, according to the report.

Iran said it did not remove any equipment from the laboratory and that the experiment was not related to pyroprocessing, a procedure that can be used to purify uranium metal used in nuclear warheads.

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