Despite attacks, NSA-level talks on

  • Delhi says awaiting response from Islamabad
  • Woman injured in firing in Poonch

Srinagar: Despite the latest attack by suspected militants in Udhampur, as well as repeated instances of exchanges of fire between the Indian and Pakistan armies along the LoC and the border, New Delhi has indicated that it is still ready to proceed with the scheduled NSA-level talks with Pakistan.
“We are still awaiting a response from Islamabad to our proposal to hold the talks between the two NSAs on August 23-24 in New Delhi,” official sources said. The recent attack in Gurdaspur and Wednesday’s incident in Udhampur had triggered speculation that India may call off the talks.
The NSA-level interaction has been agreed on, apart from several other measures, to break the deadlock between India and Pakistan during the meeting between PMs Narendra Modi and Nawaz Sharif on the sidelines of the SCO summit in the Russian city of Ufa last month.
India had proposed the dates for the talks between National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Nawaz Sharif’s Adviser on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz later this month.
Meanwhile, a woman was reportedly injured in firing by Pakistani troops along the LoC in Poonch district, an Indian official said on Wednesday. “Pakistani troops have violated the ceasefire and resorted to unprovoked firing of small arms and mortar shells on forward areas along the LoC in Sabzian sector of Poonch”, a defence spokesman said. Indian troops retaliated, resulting in exchanges which ended some hours later, he added.
Reports from Pakistan also claimed two of its citizens, including a minor were killed in firing by Indian troops on Tuesday. According to an ISPR statement, two civilians ─ including a minor ─ were killed due to “unprovoked firing” by Indian troops in Sukhial village.
—With inputs from agencies