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  • » 06/11/2012, 00.00

    INDIA - PAKISTAN

    Islamabad-New Delhi talks over Himalaya glacier



    The Pakistani government wants to break the stalemate over an area claimed by both sides for more than 50 years. New Delhi is not eager for change and warns against high expectations. In April, an avalanche killed 139 Pakistani soldiers. Between 1984 and 2003, Siachen glacier's cold weather and avalanches have killed more soldiers than fighting.

    Islamabad (AsiaNews) - Indian and Pakistani defence officials began a two-day round of talks Monday to discuss the stalemate over the Siachen Glacier and its possible demilitarisation. India holds the area but Pakistan claims it.

    Held in Rawalpindi, the meeting was requested by the Pakistani side after an avalanche killed 139 people at a military camp on 7 April. Over the years, sub-zero temperatures and high altitude have killed more soldiers than fighting.

    The Indian side was led by Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma, whilst the Pakistani side was led by his counterpart Nargis Sethi.

    The meeting is part of renewed talks between the two countries, after they were interrupted by the 2008 Mumbai attacks.

    Many however see the talks as a mere formality with few chances of changing the status quo. In recent days, Sharma warned against hopes for "any dramatic announcement or decision on an issue which is very important for us".

    The Siachen Glacier is located in the eastern Karakoram Range in the Himalaya Mountains, in the Ladakh region, northern Jammu and Kashmir.

    The 70 kilometre-long glacier is the longest in the range, and the second in the world (poles excluded).

    Following independence in 1947, Kashmir and its glaciers were the object of separate territorial claims.

    Between 1984 and 2003, the area was involved in the 'Siachen conflict', which included a series of armed clashes between Indian and Pakistani troops along the glacier.

    In 2003, Islamabad signed a ceasefire, leaving the area under Indian administration.

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    See also

    14/07/2008 INDIA – PAKISTAN
    India blames Pakistan for Kabul bombing but continues peace talks
    India and Afghanistan hold Pakistan’s secret services responsible for the bombing against the Indian embassy in Kabul. Pakistan denies the charges. Both sides confirm a meeting this Friday for talks to improve trade and visits between the two sides of the disputed Kashmir territory.

    21/10/2008 INDIA - PAKISTAN
    Kashmir, after 60 years India and Pakistan reopen trade route
    The corridor has been reopened that, through Kashmir, links the two nuclear superpowers. The area, theater of a decades-old conflict, has seen skirmishes between the two sides even in recent weeks. Liberalization of trade could lead to commerce of 6 billion dollars per year.

    05/09/2005 INDIA - PAKISTAN
    First meeting between Kashmir separatists and Indian PM


    16/11/2006 INDIA – CHINA
    Buddhist political and religious leaders in Indian border state fear Chinese territorial ambitions
    China's ambassador to India claims Arunachal Pradesh. Local leaders call on New Delhi to show resolve against Beijing.

    07/08/2009 CHINA – INDIA
    Sino-Indian border talks resume
    Border disputes have lingered since 1962. Beijing claims almost the whole of the State of Arunachal Pradesh, whilst India claims more than 50,000 km2 of Chinese-held territory. Meanwhile both sides are building up their military along the border.



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