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For first time, Pak accepts Indian dossier on terror in J&K

For first time, Pak accepts Indian dossier on terror in J&K

Author: Pranab Dhal Samanta
Publication: The Indian Express
Date: October 29, 2007
URL: http://www.indianexpress.com/story/233552.html

Introduction: Delhi lists militant outfits, camps across Loc

The Indo-Pak anti terror meeting last week may not have led to any major breakthrough, but for the first time Pakistan has accepted a dossier on terror in Jammu and Kashmir. This is being seen as a significant movement from Islamabad's earlier position of not discussing Kashmir-related terror.

It's learnt that India had prepared a detailed dossier on camps and tanzeems located across the Line of Control, Lashkar-e-Toiba operations in the Valley and infiltration from the Pakistani side. The Pakistan delegation accepted the dossier and said they would come up with a response at the next meeting.

While the Indian side remains skeptical of any positive response, the fact is that this was a more constructive approach than the straight denial at the first meeting of this mechanism on March 6 when Islamabad refused to discuss any Kashmir-related case on the grounds that it saw this as a "freedom struggle".

India is clear that Pakistan has not changed its basic position on violence in Kashmir, but felt that the October 22 meeting was relatively more constructive in tenor largely because another stand-off could have killed all hopes. Both sides agreed to "identify measures, exchange specific information and assist in investigations".

Further, sources said, Pakistan has given responses to the information India provided at the last meeting. While authorities are unwilling to disclose the details, the broad indication is that there is no significant breakthrough though it's being looked at carefully.

At last week's meeting, it's learnt that Pakistan objected to Indian leaders and officials jumping to conclusions within hours of a terror attack about the source and ISI involvement. Pakistan is believed to have cited the Hyderabad example where the Chief Minister downward, the finger of blame was pointed at Pakistan.

Despite this resentment, India did manage to pass detailed information on support from Pakistan to the Bangladesh-based Harkat ul-Jehad-i-Islami (HUJI). India has given a list of HUJI activists allegedly based in Pakistan, which includes Shahid Bilal. While security agencies have indicative reports that Bilal, perhaps, is no longer alive, a confirmation from Pakistan would help, given his involvement in recent high profile blasts.

Broadly, sources said, the India dossier focused on Kashmir-related terror and HUJI besides other supporting information where there was some credible information of Pakistan involvement.

While External Affairs Ministry additional secretary K C Singh led the Indian side, Pakistan had a new head this time in Khalid Aziz babar The next meeting will be in Islamabad and both sides are hoping to live up to their mutual commitment of a meeting every quarter.

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