India, Pak to resume talks on Sir Creek boundary dispute

India and Pakistan will resume talks on the Sir Creek boundary dispute here on Friday after a gap of four years.

Updated: May 19, 2011, 23:36 PM IST

Islamabad: India and Pakistan will resume
talks on the Sir Creek boundary dispute here on Friday after a
gap of four years.

An Indian delegation arrived in Pakistan today for the
talks as part of the bilateral dialogue process that was
recently revived after a gap of over two years in the wake of
the 2008 Mumbai attacks.

The eight-member delegation led by Surveyor General of
India S Subba Rao will hold two-day talks with a Pakistani
team led by Additional Defence Secretary Rear Admiral Shah
Sohail Masood.

The Indian delegation was received by senior officials
of Pakistan`s Defence Ministry at the Wagha land border
crossing this morning.

The delegation will also call on Defence Secretary
Syed Athar Ali.

During the last round of talks on the Sir Creek issue
four years ago, the two countries made significant progress in
resolving the dispute over the 96-km estuary in the Rann of
Kutch separating India`s Gujarat state from Pakistan`s Sindh
province.

At that time, Indian officials had said there was
convergence "up to a great degree" over demarcating the
maritime boundary based on maps finalised in a joint survey
conducted in early 2007.

Pakistan and India had also exchanged maps of Sir
Creek, marked with their respective claims over the marshy
strip and their respective demarcations of the maritime
boundary.

Unlike the military standoff in the Siachen glacier,
experts on both sides say a deal on the Sir Creek issue is
"doable".

The talks on the Sir Creek issue follows parleys
earlier this year between the Home and Interior Secretaries,
the Commerce Secretaries and the Water Secretaries.
Indian members of a joint Judicial Committee on
Prisoners visited Pakistan to discuss ways to speed up the
release of prisoners held in each other`s jails.

PTI