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Indo-Pak talks on Kashmir put off

July 10, 2008 15:41 IST

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The Indo-Pak talks on Kashmir-related confidence-building measures were put off indefinitely on Thursday as a top official, who was to lead the Indian side, had gone to Afghanistan in the wake of the suicide attack on New Delhi's mission in Kabul.

Officials in the Indian High Commission in Islamabad said the meeting of the Working Group on cross-Line of Control confidence-building measures, which was to be held on Thursday, was postponed as Joint Secretary T C A Raghavan had gone to Kabul.

Raghavan was to have led the Indian side at the meeting. No fresh dates have been set for the meeting of the Working Group, the officials said.

However, diplomatic sources were quoted by The News daily as saying that the meeting was now likely to be held in Islamabad on July 18, before talks between the foreign secretaries of India and Pakistan in New Delhi during July 21-22 to launch the fifth round of the composite dialogue.

The two countries were expected to discuss new Kashmir-related CBMs during the meeting of the Working Group, including modalities for intra-Kashmir trade and the launch of a truck service between Srinagar [Images] in Jammu and Kashmir [Images] and Muzaffarabad in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Lists of items to be traded through the truck service were also likely to have been discussed during the meeting. It would also have reviewed existing bus services and measures to expand and facilitate travel between the two sides of Kashmir, sources said.

The first meeting of the Working Group was held in New Delhi in May 2006.




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