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Pak rider on Siachen troop disclosure

Pak is ready to give Siachen troop position if New Delhi agrees not to make a legal claim over the glacier.

world Updated: Apr 05, 2007 17:22 IST

Pakistan has expressed readiness to meet India's demand to authenticate troops positions on Siachen provided New Delhi agrees not to use it to make a legal claim over the glacier in the future, a media report said in Islamabad on Thursday.

In the set of proposals made to India in November last year, Pakistan has offered the 'package deal'. "Pakistan has softened its stance from total opposition to authentication of troops and has offered India a package deal under which it agreed to the Indian demand but asked India for time bound withdrawal of its troops to the pre-conflict positions as quid-pro-quo," Pakistani officials were quoted as saying by Daily Times.

The details of Pakistan's proposals were made public a day before the Indian Defence Secretary Shekar Dutt and his Pakistan counterpart Kamran Rasool meet for two days talks in Rawalpindi tomorrow as part of fourth round of Composite Dialogue process.

The Pakistan official said the reason why Pakistan insisted that India should not use the authentication for any legal purpose was that "as par law authentication will legalise the Indian occupation of Siachen and Pakistan will not be able to challenge it if India withdraws from talks.

"Pakistan would also like India not to use authentication of troops for any sort of legal claims in future", the Pakistan official said.

The success of the talks would depend on India's flexibility, the official said adding this was the maximum Pakistan could offer to meet India's demand. "As far as we are concerned, we have indirectly accepted the Indian pre-condition but we hope that India will not exploit as a diplomatic victory".

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