Pakistan frees two Indian children | india | Hindustan Times
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Pakistan frees two Indian children

The boys were kept under detention for six months in Pakistan for illegally fishing in the country's territorial waters.

india Updated: May 27, 2006 13:56 IST

Pakistan on Saturday freed two Indian boys six months after they were arrested along with dozens of others for illegally fishing in the country's territorial waters.

The boys -- Piyush Ramji (7) and Bharat Babu Rama (9) were among 43 Indians seized by the Pakistani coast guard in the Arabian Sea in November, said Rauf Saddiqui, the provincial home minister.

The two boys were seen off at Karachi airport by Pakistani officials and Suresh Mehta, a diplomat at the Indian High Commission in Pakistan, before they boarded a plane for the Indian city of Bombay.

Speaking to reporters at the airport, Mehta thanked Pakistan for freeing the boys and said his government would reciprocate the "gesture of goodwill" by freeing Pakistanis held in India.

He did not say how many Pakistanis would be freed.

The release of the boys comes a day after Pakistan said it will free 71 imprisoned Indian fishermen ahead of peace talks between the two countries next week in the capital, Islamabad.

Pakistan and India have a history of bitter relations mainly because of their dispute over Kashmir, a Himalayan region which has been the cause of two of three wars since 1947 when they gained independence from Britain.