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Trucks cross Kashmir as India, Pakistan resume trade

12 February 2015 9:39

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Pakistani and Indian authorities have agreed to resume trade through the disputed Kashmir region.

Negotiations between Pakistani and Indian authorities have led to the resumption of trade at the disputed border in the Kashmir region.

Pakistani officials made the announcement on Wednesday regarding the trade that had been stalled since Indian authorities arrested a Pakistani truck driver on Friday on charges of drug trafficking.

“Trade has resumed between India and Pakistan after successful negotiations between authorities from both sides,” local administration official Sayed Ishtiaq Gillani told AFP.

Back in 2008, the two countries started barter trade across the de facto border as part of efforts to bring about peace in the volatile region, a disputed territory Delhi and Islamabad both claim.

Pakistani Trade and Travel Authority chief Imtiaz Wayen also confirmed the resumption, saying, “Yes! Trade and travel between Pakistan and India has resumed and Indian officials have decided to let all the trucks cross the border except one truck in which drug was found last week.”

The truck driver accused of drug trafficking will be questioned by Indian authorities, he stated, adding that an investigation was underway on the Pakistani side and a Trade and Travel Authority official had been arrested in connection with the case.

On Monday, delegations from the two countries failed to reach an agreement over the matter after the Indian side demanded the release of 50 trucks held on the other side of the border and Pakistanis, in return, asked for access to the detained driver and release of 22 trucks.

Kashmir lies at the heart of more than 67 years of hostility between India and Pakistan. Both countries claim the region in full but each only has control over a section of the territory. Over the past two decades, the conflict in Kashmir has left thousands of people dead.

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