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Sir Creek survey from Jan 15

December 24, 2006

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ISLAMABAD, Dec 23: Pakistan and India have finally agreed to conduct a joint survey of the Sir Creek on January 15, 2007.

The decision was taken after two days of talks between defence officials of the two countries that concluded here on Saturday.

An official told Dawn that the survey would be completed before mid-March. He said the two countries would develop a mutually acceptable map of the Sir Creek in the light of the survey.

A joint statement issued at the end of the talks said the technical-level talks were held to decide the coordinates for a joint survey of the Sir Creek and adjoining areas without prejudice to the positions of the two countries, as well as to simultaneously hold discussions on the maritime boundary.

The two sides worked out the technical details of the joint survey in an amicable manner. They also held useful discussions on various options to delimit the maritime boundary.

It was agreed to verify the outermost points of coastlines of the two countries during the survey with regard to equidistance method.

The Pakistani delegation was led by Major General Jamil-ur-Rahman Afridi, Surveyor General of Pakistan, while Rear Admirel B R Rao, Chief Hydrographer, headed the Indian side.

Earlier, the Indian delegation called on Secretary Defence Lieutenant General (retd) Tariq Wasim Ghazi and discussed with him matters related to the technical survey.

The Sir Creek is a 60-mile strip of water disputed between India and Pakistan in the Rann of Kutch marshlands. The creek, which opens up into the Arabian Sea, divides the Kutch region of the Indian state of Gujarat with the Sindh province of Pakistan.

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