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Updated: May 8, 2012 16:17 IST

India should take bold initiative to resolve Siachen dispute: Khar

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File photo of Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar
File photo of Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar

India should take a “bold initiative” to resolve the Siachen dispute that has been lingering for 23 years on the world’s highest battleground, Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar has said.

Ms. Khar called on India to show “flexibility” and meet Pakistan “half way” in normalising relations and resolving “core issues” like the dispute over Jammu and Kashmir.

Pakistan wants the amicable solution to all disputes with India, including the Kashmir issue, through dialogue, Ms. Khar said told reporters after addressing a conference of Indian and Pakistani businessmen here.

Ms. Khar referred to the avalanche that hit a high-altitude Pakistan Army camp in the Siachen sector and buried 139 people under snow last month and said the two countries had “23 years of lost opportunities” to resolve the standoff on the Himalayan glacier.

She said Pakistan had suffered heavy human losses in Siachen and it wants India to take a “bold initiative” to resolve the issue along with other outstanding issues between the two countries.

“Kashmir is the core issue. However, Pakistan was willing to solve the Siachen dispute back in 1989 when (then premiers) Benazir Bhutto and Rajiv Gandhi met. Today there has been no change in our stance on Siachen. There cannot be a military solution to any of our problems,” Ms. Khar said.

“We welcome India to meet us half-way,” Ms. Khar said in a speech that dwelt on the reasons why the approach adopted by the two countries over the past six decades had not worked.

Her comments came after Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari during his recent visit to New Delhi requested India for mutual withdrawal of troops from the Siachen area after it suffered heavy casualties in the avalanche.

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I suppose blood money from US is dried up so the call for demilitarisation of siachen.In level playing field Pakistan terrorist can't keep up their past trend. past 40 years of relentless terrorism from pakistan soil put India back in its development and countless innocent lives were lost. Eye for eye is not the answer in civilised world, so India can work towards betterment of pakistan provided pakistan hand over all the terrorist in their soil to UN monitors and demilitarise pak occupied kashmir then India can look in to niti gritties. India always was an honest player in peace deal but time and again pakistan goverment sponsored terrorist derailed the whole intitations. It is time they do their hard yard first under the disguise of UN monitors.

from:  Sairam Reddy
Posted on: May 10, 2012 at 14:32 IST

"We welcome India to meet us half-way"
Just wondering what does the Pakistani version of "half-way" mean, are they willing to authenticate their actual positions on map as suggested by India time and again? If not, then it really doesn't make sense?

from:  Harry
Posted on: May 10, 2012 at 09:45 IST

Khar has it wrong. It is Pakistan that needs to take a bold initiative. Existing
agreements clearly stated that the border from point NJ9842 went north to the
glaciers. It was Pakistan that unilaterally flouted written agreement to pretend that
the border went north-east from point NJ9842 to the Karakoram Pass. It tried to
reinforce its phony claim by first inviting foreign mountaineering groups to seek
permit from Pak authorities for activities in the Indian region and then planning
to move its troops to the area it was laying claim to. It was to preempt the
Pakistan Army that India move its army to the Siachen area. It is very clear what
Pakistan needs to do. It must, at a minimum, authenticate the actual ground
position line. India cannot accept any less, especially after Pakistan Army's
treachery at Kargil.

from:  Satish Kumar
Posted on: May 10, 2012 at 07:13 IST

I agree with Mukul above and will make further additions to it. Pak Foreign minister has asked India to take "bold initiatives" for peace and has asked us to meet half way. I find this very questionable since there are no credible grounds on which we could trust their intentions on peace and dialogue. With the avalanche killing 139 of their soldiers it looks as if that these statements of peace and dialogue are solely based on this incident and there is no genuine need for peace. Also India has on several occasions taken the role of elder brother and put forth peace proposals but these have not been considered. With Pakistan's economy in shambles, their army taking a severe toll and them not being able to maintain their troops the need for peace is a desparate attempt to regroup and resume aiding and abetting terror on Indian soil. While the peace move needs to be welcomed with caution, the history and its lessons should not be forgotten.

from:  Sanjai
Posted on: May 9, 2012 at 23:23 IST

Wisdom has dawned late on Pakistan after it suffered heavy casualty due to avalanche. Pakistan's expressed intention that it wants resolve of all outstanding disputes with India through dialogue rings hollow particularly when it continues to patronize India-centric terror groups by providing them with logistical and tactical support to create mayhem against India. However, the subtext of her statement is something I can't agree more with. If Pakistan really believes that there can't be any military solution to the problems it has with India then the process of peaceful settlement should start from their end by way of disarmament of anti-India terror group, cooperation with India on trade and other related issues and showing other acts of friendly neighbourliness and not just by demilitarization of Siachen. One must not forget we have always extended friendly overtures to Pakistan only to be turned down. Intransigent Pakistan can't even begin by giving MFN status to India.

from:  Mukul Kanti Dutta
Posted on: May 8, 2012 at 22:18 IST

Kashmir issue is a hard nut to crack. It can perhaps be solved by
accepting the present line of control by both countries. Dividing a
country further or giving a part of one country to another on
religious grounds is not a solution in the present day world where
people of different religion, case, creed, etc. have to live together
with peace and harmony. Otherwise, it will only lead to bloodshed and
perennial loss of peace. Even for accepting the present line of
control, both sides should have large hearts. Solving Siachen issue
should not be prolonged indefinitely as huge amounts have to be spent
by either side for keeping troops due to extreme climatic conditions.

from:  C.K. George
Posted on: May 8, 2012 at 17:23 IST
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