A Republican senator has strongly criticised India for continuing to buy oil from sanctions-hit Iran, saying it should quit imports entirely to support the US effort to put pressure on Tehran over its nuclear program.
Senator Jim Risch said he was deeply disappointed that the Obama administration in June extended a sanctions waiver to India - in recognition of its efforts in significantly reducing those oil imports.
Mr Risch said there was no reason why India should not purchase oil from elsewhere if it wants to support the US "as a friend and a partner."
He spoke at a confirmation hearing for Nisha Desai Biswal, nominated as top US diplomat for South Asia.
Biswal defended the waiver decision, saying Iran used to be India's second-largest supplier, but is now fifth or sixth.