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Politics of the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline

The formal launch of the Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project has been billed as part of the solution to Pakistan’s deepening energy crisis. Its success, however, is not just a question of diplomacy

Under president Asif Ali Zardari little has been done to solve the Pakistan’s energy crisis. Energy shortages not only bring daily difficulty to Pakistani households, they are blunting the country’s economy as well.Yet in a bid to woo voters before this May’s presidential elections, Zardari initiated the Pakistani section of the IP pipeline on 11 March, much to the annoyance of the country’s awkward but longstanding ally the US. Many see the long-delayed launch as no more than a gimmick to shore up the government’s declining popularity at the end of its five-year term rather than a genuine effort to make the pipeline a reality.But, says Sajjad Ashraf, a former member of the Pakistan Foreign

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