India, Pakistan Not to Target Civilians on Border

November 25, 2000
NEW DELHI -- India and Pakistan have agreed to stop targeting civilians on both sides of the disputed Kashmir border, the Press Trust of India reported.
Indian and Pakistan security forces routinely exchange artillery, mortar and small arms fire across the tense border and both sides accuse each other of killing civilians.
The Indian Border Security Force (BSF) and the paramilitary Pakistan rangers agreed in principle not to engage in unprovoked firing on civilians in border areas in the Jammu sector of insurgency-racked Jammu and Kashmir state, the news agency reported late on Thursday.
The agreement was struck during recent border talks, the agency said, quoting BSF inspector-general Avtar Singh Aulakh who led a 10-member team to Pakistan.
A volatile Line of Control or cease-fire line divides Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistani Kashmir.
The Himalayan territory has been the cause of two wars between the neighbors.
Intrusions by armed militants into the Kargil area of India's northern Kashmir nearly led to another war as New Delhi blamed Pakistan for the incursion, a charge Pakistan denied.
India controls 45 percent of the troubled region, Pakistan a third and China the rest.
(Reuter)