Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo with Raj Chengappa of India Today (Excerpts)

June 26, 2019


QUESTION:  And on Iran, I mean, India’s deeply concerned because the sanctions against India if it bought oil from Iran.  India’s concerned if there’s a conflict that breaks out between U.S. and Iran, we would be deeply affected.  Would there be such a conflict if Iran doesn’t comply?  And what are you doing to meet India’s energy needs?

SECRETARY POMPEO:  So for India’s energy needs, we’re working diligently to make sure that India is fully supplied with crude oil at a good price, too, right – we know that matters, not just the fact that you have it, but it needs to be affordable energy.  America cares about affordable energy for its citizens as well.

As for the challenge with the Islamic Republic of Iran, American’s done everything it can to de-escalate.  If there is conflict, if there is war, if there’s a kinetic activity, it will because the Iranians made that choice.  I hope that they do not.  I don’t think they should ever mistake President Trump for not being prepared to defend American interest all around the world, and I hope that the world will come to defend that waterway that is so central to the Indian economy.  You know it; Prime Minister Modi spoke with me about it today.  A significant piece of India’s not only energy needs, but even more broadly, come through the Strait of Hormuz, transit in that space.  The world needs to join together to ensure that there’s free and open navigation in that waterway.  When we do that, when we do that in a serious way, we’ll deter Iranian aggression, and we’ll get Iran to behave like we’ve asked them to.  Nothing special, we just want them to behave like a normal country.  That’s not too much to ask for them.