LAHORE - The DGMOs of Pakistan and India who met here at the Wagah Border on Tuesday agreed to make hotline contact between the two sides ‘more effective and result-oriented’ to ensure peace and tranquillity along the Line of Control (LoC).
“Both the DGMOs showed their commitment to maintain ceasefire on the Line of Control and agreed to re-energise the existing mechanisms,” said a joint statement issued by the ISPR at the end of the meeting which was held in a cordial, positive and constructive atmosphere.
Pakistan Army’s Maj-Gen Aamer Riaz and his Indian counterpart Lt-Gen Vinod Bhatia also agreed to hold two flag meetings between brigade commanders on the Line of Control in the near future for the sanctity of the LoC.
The Tuesday meeting, the first of its kind in 14 years, was made possible after a meeting between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh in New York in September this year. The two premiers had decided that the DGMOs should hold talks to reduce the tensions.
Besides developing consensus on making hotline contact more effective and result-oriented, the DGMOs also decided to inform each other if any innocent civilian inadvertently crosses the Line of Control, in order to ensure his/her early return.
“Both the sides decided to further reinforce the ceasefire agreement concluded between Pakistan and India in 2003 to reduce tensions along the LoC and Working Boundary,” Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Maj-Gen Asim Saleem Bajwa said in a statement.
According to him, both the sides reiterated their resolve and commitment to continue efforts for ensuring ceasefire, peace and tranquillity on the LoC. He said the meeting between Director Generals Military Operations of Pakistan and India was held in a cordial atmosphere and remained positive.
Talking to newspersons, he said the Pakistani DGMO had extended an invitation to his Indian counterpart for a meeting at Wagah border towards Pakistan side, in the context of the situation along the Line of Control and Working Boundary. The Pakistani DGMO was assisted by two brigadiers and two colonels while the Indian DGMO was assisted by two brigadiers and three colonels.
Earlier, Maj-Gen Aamer Riaz welcomed the Indian delegation, led by Lt-Gen Vinod Bhatia at the Wagah Border. The Indian delegation left for New Delhi after the talks.
“We had a cordial, constructive and fruitful meeting. We discussed the ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC) and the existing mechanisms,” DGMO Lt-Gen Vinod Bhatia said after the two-hour-long talks with his Pakistani counterpart. “We both decided to ensure ceasefire and strengthen the existing mechanisms.”
Besides tensions on the Line of Control, the DGMOs discussed the matters related to the international boundary with a focus on maintaining the 2003 ceasefire and ensuring normalcy, the statement said.
General Bhatia said that both the sides had agreed to maintain ceasefire along the de facto border in Jammu and Kashmir which has seen several bloody clashes between the two armies in the last few months. The last time the DGMOs met was in July 1999 after the Kargil war.
The issues discussed included violations of ceasefire on the LoC as well as infiltration. The focus was on maintaining ceasefire and bringing normalcy.
The two DGMOs usually talk on the hotline every Tuesday.
The meeting was aimed at strengthening the mechanisms for ensuring a ceasefire along the LoC and the proposal was accepted by India.
Following is the text of the the joint statement issued after the DGMOs’ meeting:
1. The meeting was held at Wagah Border on the issues regarding the Line of Control. The Indian delegation was headed by Lt-Gen Vinod Bhatia, Indian Army Director General Military Operations. The Pakistan delegation was headed by Maj-Gen Aamer Riaz, Director General Military Operations.
2. The meeting was held in a cordial, positive and constructive atmosphere. Both DGsMO showed their commitment to maintain the sanctity and ceasefire on the Line of Control and agreed to re-energise the existing mechanisms. Consensus was developed to make hotline contact between the two DGMOs more effective and result-oriented. It was also decided to inform each other if any innocent civilian inadvertently crosses the Line of Control to ensure his/her early return.
3. To carry forward the positive spirit of the DGMOs’ meeting, two-flag meetings between the brigade commanders will be held on the Line of Control in the near future, to ensure maintenance of peace and tranquility along the Line of Control.
4. Both the sides reiterated their resolve and commitment to continue efforts for ensuring ceasefire, peace and tranquility on the Line of Control.
Monitoring Desk adds: India’s Border Security Force (BSF) chief Subhash Joshi also on Tuesday held talks in Lahore with his Pakistani counterpart Major General Tahir Javed on border-related issues, reported Indian media.
Joshi, who is on a five-day visit to Pakistan, is expected to raise issues concerning the international border and other issues.
Joshi reached Pakistan through the land route via Wagah post.