India, Pakistan discuss ways to boost trade, transport

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Islamabad, July 19 : Senior officials of the Indian and Pakistan governments on Friday reviewed ways to boost bilateral trade and transport services, besides discussing methods for the effective implementation of existing cross-Line of Control (LoC) measures.

The meeting of the India-Pakistan Working Group on cross-LoC CBMs was held here in "a cordial and constructive atmosphere", a joint statement at the end of the day-long talks said.

The talks were held nearly a week after India and Pakistan traded charges over the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) alleged role in the July 7 suicide attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul in which over 50 people, including a diplomat and an army brigadier were killed.

T.C.A Raghvan, joint secretary in charge of Pakistan in the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, held talks with Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry, director general in charge of South Asia and SAARC in the Pakistan Foreign Office, on enhancing trade and transport links across the LoC.

They also discussed modalities for implementing decisions taken by External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee and his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi during their meeting in Islamabad May 21.

The two sides had agreed on many cross-LoC CBMs that will enhance people-to-people contact and help "build on convergences and narrow down divergences on Kashmir". These include raising the frequency of the Muzaffarabad-Srinagar and Rawalkot-Poonch bus services from fortnightly to weekly basis and finalising modalities for intra-Kashmir trade and truck services.

ANI

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