India, Pakistan border chiefs to meet after peace talks collapsed

Reuters , Wednesday 26 Aug 2015

India-Pakistan Talks
A Pakistani Ranger (R) and an Indian Border Security Force (BSF) officer shake hands during the daily parade at the Pakistan-India joint check-post at Wagah border, on the outskirts of Lahore October 23, 2011. (Photo: Reuters)

India and Pakistan border security force chiefs will meet in New Delhi next month, Pakistani officials said on Wednesday, days after the first high-level peace talks in years between the arch rivals collapsed.

The chiefs of the Pakistan Rangers and the Indian Border Security Force will meet in New Delhi from Sept 9 to 13, according to a statement by the Pakistan Rangers.

Representatives from the two paramilitary border forces held a meeting on Tuesday at the Wagah-Attari border "to coordinate modalities of (the) September meeting", the statement said.

The agenda for the meeting would include recent firing over the Line of Control, the de facto frontier in the divided Kashmir region, as well as cross-border smuggling, Pakistan Rangers spokesman Waheed Bukhari told Reuters.

Indian officials were not immediately available to confirm the meeting.

On Saturday, the first high-level peace talks in years between the two country's national security advisers were cancelled after a dispute over the agenda for those talks.

India and Pakistan have fought three wars since becoming independent nations in 1947, two of them over the Himalayan region of Kashmir, which both claim in full but rule in part.

New Delhi has for years accused Pakistan of backing separatist Muslim rebels in India's part of Kashmir. Pakistan denies the allegations and blames India for fomenting unrest inside Pakistan.

In the cancelled talks, India wanted to only discuss terrorism-related issues and objected to Pakistan's intentions of meeting separatists from Kashmir. Pakistan wanted a wider agenda.

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