Joint Statement - India and Pakistan, November 15, 2006
Joint Press Statement, India-Pakistan Foreign Secretary
Talks November 14-15, 2006
1. The Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistan met in New Delhi on November 14-15, 2006. Shri Shivshankar Menon, Foreign Secretary of India led the Indian delegation while the Pakistan delegation was led by Foreign Secretary Mr. Riaz Mohammad Khan. They reviewed the progress in the third round of the Composite Dialogue encompassing talks on Peace and Security including CBMs; Jammu and Kashmir; Siachen; Wullar Barrage/Tulbal Navigation Project; Sir Creek; Terrorism and Drug Trafficking; Economic and Commercial Cooperation and Promotion of Friendly Exchanges in Various Fields. The talks were held in a friendly and positive atmosphere.
2. They exchanged views on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir in the spirit of the Havana Joint Press Statement to hold purposeful discussions and to build on convergences and narrow down divergences. They agreed to fully implement measures to enhance interaction and cooperation across the LoC including the early operationalisation of truck service for trade on agreed items.
3. In pursuance of the Havana Joint Press Statement, they discussed terrorism and the need to effectively deal with it. They agreed to set up a 3-member anti-terror mechanism to be headed by Additional Secretary (International Organizations) from the Ministry of External Affairs of India and the Additional Secretary (UN&EC) from Pakistan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Its mandate would be to consider counter terrorism measures, including through the regular and timely sharing of information.
4. The two Foreign Secretaries exchanged views on Siachen.
5. Both sides also agreed to hold a meeting of experts on 22-23 December 2006 to decide on the coordinates for joint survey of Sir Creek and adjoining areas, without prejudice to each other’s position, as well as to simultaneously conduct discussions on the Maritime Boundary. The joint survey shall be completed by February 2007.
6. The agreement on “Reducing the Risk from Accidents relating to Nuclear Weapons” was initialed by the two sides. They agreed on its early signing. They expressed satisfaction over the implementation of the “Agreement on Pre-Notification of the Flight Testing of Ballistic Missiles”.
7. They welcomed the inauguration on November 14 of the hotline between the Pakistan Maritime Agency and the Indian Coast Guard.
8. On humanitarian grounds, all fishermen and prisoners of the other country, whose national status stands confirmed and who have completed their sentences, would be released by 25th December, 2006.
9. They reviewed the progress made towards the revision of the 1982 Protocol on Consular Access and expressed the hope that the Protocol will result in expeditious disposal of consular issues related to prisoners and fishermen of both sides. They also agreed to examine the release of prisoners of the other country who are detained on minor charges.
10. They also agreed to promote friendly exchanges between the two countries. They agreed on the need for an early finalization of an updated visa agreement between the two countries. In addition, it was agreed to expand the list of shrines under the 1974 Bilateral Protocol on Visits to Religious Shrines.
11. The Foreign Secretaries reiterated the importance of enhancing mutually beneficial economic cooperation. .
12. Both sides reiterated their keenness to see their respective Consulates General in Mumbai and Karachi reopened quickly.
13. Both sides agreed on the early signing of the revised Protocol on Shipping Services.
14. The Foreign Secretaries agreed to meet in February 2007 in Islamabad to launch the next round of the Composite Dialogue.
15. The Foreign Secretary of Pakistan called on the External Affairs Minister, Shri Pranab Mukherjee during the course of his visit.
Source: Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi.