Troubled Waters: Next Indo-Pak Talks in US

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and India are again meeting to take forward discussion on Indus Water Treaty (IWT) and next round of talks will be held in United States in April.

The officials from two nuclear armed neighbours met in Islamabad and held two-day discussions where they agreed on redesigning the Miyar Hydroelectric project, Radio Pakistan reported on Tuesday.

It was also agreed that the Lower Kalnai and Pakal Dul projects will be inspected again, Radio Pakistan added in a news report.

The Pakistani delegation was headed by Mirza Asif Saeed, while PK Saxena led the Indian delegation.

The news report said that the US and the World Bank have intervened between India and Pakistan to break the ice and talk on the water issue.

Water and Power Minister Khawaja Mohammad Asif had said on Monday that the two nations would hold three-day secretary-level talks on the Kishanganga and Ratle hydropower projects, under the aegis of the World Bank, in Washington from April 11.

“The US has intervened at the highest level to help both countries resolve the issue. There will be secretary-level talks on the Ratle and Kishanganga hydropower projects in Washington on April 11, 12 and 13,” Asif had said at a press conference on the sidelines of the two-day talks.

The two-day talks of Indus water commissioners of the two countries marked the first formal engagement between the arch rivals since the relationship between them nosedived in September last year after an attack on an Indian military base in Kashmir.

Under the 1960 Indus Waters Treaty (IWT), India and Pakistan are bound to hold such meetings. But the current meeting of the Indus water commissioners is significant in the sense that Premier Narendra Modi last year threatened to revoke the water accord with Pakistan.

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