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Pakistan, India open talks on Siachen

Pakistan, India open talks on Siachen

Islamabad: Pakistan and India Monday opened two-day talks to look for a solution to the dispute over Siachen Glacier, the world's highest battle field, officials said.

Defence Secretaries of the two countries will review several proposals to settle the dispute, they said.

Indian Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma is leading an Indian delegation while Pakistani side is headed by Defence Secretary Nargis Sethi at the talks in the garrison city of Rawalpindi near Islamabad, reported Xinhua.

The two defence secretaries held one-on-one meeting ahead of the delegation-level meeting, official sources said.

Besides defence officials, the directors general of military operations and foreign ministry representatives are also participating in the talks.

The Siachen Glacier dispute was highlighted after a massive avalanche struck a Pakistan Army camp in early April, killing 140 soldiers and civilian contractors.

There have been calls to find out solution to the long-standing dispute where harsh weather has killed more soldiers than actual fighting.

Both countries have held series of talks on the issue but have failed to reach any agreement. They last held a meeting on the issue in the Indian capital of New Delhi in mid-2011 without making any progress.

Pakistani Army chief General Ashfaq Pervaz Kayani, who visited Siachen in the wake of the avalanche, called for a negotiated end to the confrontation and said the glacier should be demilitarized.

‘This conflict should be resolved, but how it is resolved, the two countries have to talk about it,’ he had said.


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