Respect LoC, India tells Pakistan

Pak Summons Indian Envoy, Serves Demarche; DGMOs In Regular Touch

PRESS TRUST OF INDIA

New Delhi/Islamabad, Jan 11: Underlining the need for respecting the sanctity of Line of Control, India Friday told Pakistan that it had only resorted to “controlled response” to the “unprovoked” firing by Pakistani army yesterday along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir.
This was conveyed by Indian High Commissioner Sharat Sabharwal, who was called in by the Pakistan Foreign Office and served a demarche by Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani over yesterday's incident in Battal sector of the LoC, which the Pakistan Army said had resulted in the death of a soldier.
“The Indian High Commissioner was called to the Foreign Office where he met Jilani and issued a note verbale on an incident which is said to have occurred on January 10,” official spokesperson in Ministry of External Affairs said. He also said Pakistan is claiming that one of their soldiers was killed in the incident.
The High Commissioner told Jilani that there was “unprovoked firing from Pakistan (along the LoC) in Mendhar sector and there was a controlled response from our side,” the spokesperson said.
The Indian envoy stressed the need for holding the sanctity of LoC and adherence of the Simla Agreement to sort out bilateral issues, he said.
On Pakistan refusing to allow trucks from India carrying goods to cross LoC trade point in Poonch district, the spokesperson said “our officials are in talks.”
As many as 25 trucks carrying goods, mostly vegetables, from India were not allowed to cross the LoC and enter Pakistan-administered Kashmir at Chakan-Da-Bagh, according to officials of the Trade Facilitation Center (TFC) at Poonch yesterday.
The spokesperson also reiterated India's position that it was “capable” of resolving the issue bilaterally and rejected role of the UN or any third party.
He also noted that DGMOs of both the countries were in “regular touch”.
There have been three violations of the nine-year-old ceasefire along the LoC in the past five days.
The Indian Army said two of its soldiers were killed in a cross-border raid by Pakistani troops on Tuesday while another Pakistani soldier died on Sunday.
The clashes were among the most serious violations of the truce that was put in place in late 2003.
In Islamabad, Pakistan lodged “a strong protest on the repeated, unacceptable and unprovoked attacks on Pakistani soldiers by the Indian army” and sought “thorough investigation” by the Indian government.
Officials of the Pakistan Foreign Office told PTI that Jilani handed over a strongly-worded demarche to Sabharwal.
A statement issued by the Pakistan Foreign Office said Jilani “asked the Indian government to thoroughly investigate the repeated violations of the ceasefire along the Line of Control by Indian troops and also take necessary steps to ensure their non-recurrence.”
Jilani renewed Pakistan's offer to hold an “independent inquiry” into recent ceasefire violations through the United Nations Military Observers Group for India and Pakistan, the Pakistan Foreign Office statement said.
The Pakistani statement said Jilani reminded the Indian government “of its commitment to fully implement the ceasefire” and urged it to “abide (by) and respect the ceasefire along the LoC, which is an important CBM that has worked well since 2003.”
The Pakistan Foreign Secretary “emphasised that such unprovoked attacks were against the spirit of the ongoing peace process. These attacks not only vitiate the atmosphere but also create unnecessary and avoidable distractions in our efforts towards the peace process,” the statement said.
“Pakistan has pursued with seriousness the dialogue with India and has taken significant steps to create a peaceful environment. Pakistan reiterates its commitment to a peaceful resolution of all outstanding issues through a sustained and result-oriented dialogue with India,” it said.
Pakistan's Foreign Office had earlier called in Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gopal Baglay on January 7 to protest an incident that occurred a day earlier.
The External Affairs Ministry summoned Pakistan High Commissioner Salman Bashir earlier this week to protest the killing of the two Indian soldiers.
Sources in Islamabad said the Pakistan Foreign Office's decision to call in the Indian High Commissioner to be given a demarche by the Foreign Secretary marked an escalation in the tit-for-tat responses.

Lastupdate on : Fri, 11 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 11 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 12 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST




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