New Delhi (Sputnik): Amid reignited pressure to follow US sanctions on Iran and Russia, India's former envoy to the UN has categorically stated that as a sovereign and independent country, "India applies laws that are adopted by her own legislature".
Asoke Kumar Mukerji, who represented India at the UN from April 2013 to December 2015, said there is a well-known principle of sovereign democracy which was popular even during the American Revolution, when the American colonies opposed the laws of Great Britain on the grounds of "no taxation without representation".
On 30 May, US Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook warned states that import oil after the expiration of waivers on 2 May that sanctions would be imposed "even if a country had not met its previously-negotiated purchase caps".
"India will comply with UN laws, including sanctions adopted by the UNSC, but not allow the extra-territorial application of another country's domestic laws on India", Mukerji, who is also a distinguished fellow of the Vivekananda International Foundation, an Indian think tank, said.
India is signatory to the UN Charter as a founding member and soon after independence, the Indian legislature adopted a law requiring India to abide by UN Security Council resolutions, required by Article 25 of the UN Charter.
Meanwhile, following the promise made in a meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif during his visit to New Delhi, the Indian government has started a discussion on US sanctions on the purchase of Iranian oil.
On 4 June, India's Union Home Minister Amit Shah held a wide-ranging discussion with Indian Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar and Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.
On 14 May, then Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had conveyed to her Iranian counterpart that a decision regarding the purchase of Iranian crude will only take place after the country's general elections conclude on 23 May.
The US had granted exemptions to eight countries, including India, China, Japan, South Korea, and Turkey "to ensure a well-supplied oil market" in November last year for six months after it re-imposed sanctions on Iran from 2 May. India's External Affairs Ministry claimed being in constant touch with the US to seek a further extension of the waiver on oil imports from the Islamic Republic.
Sources said that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is expected to arrive in India on 25-26 June to discuss a wide range of trade issues, including sanctions which the US has imposed on Iran and Russia.