Pak Asks India to Withdraw Troops from Siachen

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan today asked India to withdraw its troops from Siachen, claiming their presence on the glacier was damaging the environment and polluting one of the country’s main sources of water supplies. 

“Presence of Indian forces on Siachen Glacier is harmful to the environment,” according to Advisor to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Radio Pakistan reported on Wednesday.

Pakistan is facing a water shortage and Indian forces are damaging one of the largest sources of water to Pakistan on a regular basis‚ Aziz said.

Presence of Indian forces on Siachen is a big issue and should be resolved as soon as possible, Aziz stated insisting that India should pull out its troops from the glacier.

He further added that disposal of daily use items by thousands of Indian soldiers is detrimental to the glacier.

India and Pakistan are working on resolving their water issues, Aziz stated. The two countries are doing this through multiple channels including Pakistan-India composite dialogue and Indus Water Commission.

Aziz also said that water should be properly used in Pakistan‚ it should be conserved and new water reservoirs should be built. He also said ‘Senate has recently formed a committee to deliberate various dimensions of water related issues and suggest its recommendations.’

Indian and Pakistani troops have been locked in an eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation on Siachen, the world’s highest and coldest battlefield, since 1984. 

The guns have been largely silent along the Actual Ground Position Line since the two sides put in place a ceasefire in 2003 but adverse weather conditions on the glacier have claimed more lives on both sides than actual hostilities.  Agencies

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