NEW DEHLI: India and Pakistan Monday discussed demilitarization of Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest militarised zone, in a “constructive framework”, picking up threads of the issue after a gap of three years, Press Trust of India PTI news agency reported.
The issue was discussed at 12th round of two-day Defence Secretary level talks between two sides. “The talks were held in a constructive framework. Both sides apprised each other of their perception about Siachen issue and also discussed the surrounding issues,” Indian Defence Ministry officials said. Defence Secretary Pradeep Kumar led the Indian delegation with his Pakistani counterpart Lt General (Retd) Syed Ather Ali.
The Pakistani Defence Secretary met Indian Defence Minister A K Antony in the afternoon for over 20 minutes, PTI said.
The decision to resume talks between the two countries was taken last year during a meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Yusuf Raza Gilani in Thimpu, Bhutan when they decided to take forward the dialogue process.
Pakistan delegation has two civilian officials and four military officers. The Indian side includes Special Secretary R K Mathur, Director General of Military Operations (DGMO) Lt General A M Verma and Surveyor General S Subha Rao.
The two sides may come up with a joint statement tomorrow after the talks on Tuesday, Indian officials said.
Siachen, with an area of over 2500 sq km, the world’s highest militarised zone, has been a long pending issue between India and Pakistan over differences on the location of 110-km long Actual Ground Position Line (AGPL) which passes through Soltoro Ridge and Siachen Glacier.