(Corrects the envoy's quote in paragraph 2)
NEW DELHI, May 15 (Reuters) - A top U.S. energy diplomat on
Tuesday said he was "not too impressed" with India's efforts to
cut its imports of oil from Western sanctions-hit Iran.
"We are not too impressed today," Carlos Pascual, the State
Department's special envoy for international energy issues, said
when asked by Reuters how likely India was to get a waiver from
U.S. financial sanctions.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton leaned on India last
week to cut its imports of Iranian oil further, and said
Washington may not make a decision on whether to exempt New
Delhi from financial sanctions for another two months.
Clinton, who was on a three-day visit to India, said the
United States was encouraged by the steps its ally had taken to
reduce its reliance on Iranian oil, but that "even more" was
As Tehran's second-biggest crude customer, India is crucial
to U.S. efforts to squeeze Iran's economy until it agrees to
curb its nuclear programme, which the United States and other
Western nations suspect is a cover to build atomic weapons.
The issue has become an irritant in ties between India and
the United States.
(Reporting by Frank Jack Daniel; editing by Malini Menon)