India and Pak to talk on Nuclear CBMs this month

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Islamabad, Dec 22: Senior Indian and Pakistani officials will meet here during December 26-27 for talks on nuclear and conventional confidence-building measures as part of the bilateral dialogue process.

This will be the first meeting of the Joint Working Group on nuclear and conventional CBMs in over four years though other officials, including the two Foreign Secretaries, have discussed these issues in recent meetings in Islamabad and New Delhi, diplomatic sources told media.

Among the issues that are expected to be discussed at the upcoming meeting are CBMs related to Jammu and Kashmir and missile tests and steps to boost cross-LoC trade and travel, the sources said.

In an apparent bid to strengthen its case for access to civil nuclear technology, Pakistan has been pressing the issue of civil nuclear cooperation with India, including a proposal to discuss measures to cope with a Fukushima-like situation, the sources said.

This too is likely to come up at next week's meeting. The Indian side at the upcoming meeting will include diplomats who handle issues related to Pakistan and disarmament.

The Pakistani side will be led by an Additional Secretary of the Foreign Office. The Joint Working Group on nuclear and conventional CBMs had last met in October 2007.

India and Pakistan resumed their dialogue process early this year after a gap of over two years in the wake of the 2008 Mumbai attacks that was carried out by Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba.

PTI

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