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National

May 27, 2016

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Pak-India border talks likely in Lahore in July

Pak-India border talks likely in Lahore in July

NEW DELHI: Border guarding forces of Pakistan and India are expected to hold their bi-annual director general (DG)-level talks on issues related to ceasefire violations and infiltration in July 2016 in Lahore, the Times of India reported.

The last such meeting between the Indian Border Security Force and Pakistan Rangers was held in September 2015. While the forces have mutually agreed to hold the talks between July 21 and 24 at the Rangers’ headquarters in Lahore sources said, a final call on travel will only be taken by the governments of the two countries.

The proposed visit of an National Investigation Agency (NIA) team to Pakistan to probe the Pathankot terror attack is awaiting Islamabad’s approval. A Joint Investigation Team from Pakistan had visited Pathankot early in 2016.

Positive movement on NIA’s proposed visit could pave the way for the Border Security Force (BSF)-Rangers meeting.

Officials said the bi-annual meeting between the two border guarding forces has been already delayed due to a number of bilateral issues. They said the agenda for the proposed talks is in the making.

The last time the two sides had met in Delhi it was decided not to fire heavy artillery like mortar shells and ensure that civilians living along the border were not harmed.

The two forces had also decided that their officials, right up to the level of director general, will exchange mobile numbers, email ids and fax numbers for swift communication to resolve disputes on the border and Line of Control.

The DG-level talks between the two sides are a bi-annual affair but many a time these meetings have not taken place due to strain in relations. The last time BSF travelled to Pakistan for these talks was in December 2013.

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