The Border Security Force and the Pakistan Rangers agreed on Monday to ensure peace by “holding fire” along the International Border in Jammu and Kashmir, PTI reported. The decision came after a commander-level meeting of the two forces at a border outpost.
In fresh firing on Sunday, two BSF personnel were killed after Pakistan Rangers allegedly resorted to unprovoked firing along the border in the Pragwal area of Akhnoor sector. Several casualties among security forces and civilians have been reported in alleged ceasefire violations by Pakistan in recent weeks.
The two sides decided to “develop confidence” between them, and Pakistan said it would ensure peace and communicate with the BSF whenever required, an unidentified official told PTI. Pakistan said it would not initiate any cross-border firing and the BSF said it would only retaliate when provoked.
“Today’s meeting is likely to bring a firing-free environment, particularly for the border area villagers on both sides,” the official said. “The commanders of both sides have agreed to keep the talks going at every level to develop confidence between the two forces.”
The two sides will meet again on June 21.
On May 29, Indian and Pakistani Armies agreed to implement the ceasefire understanding of 2003 “in letter and spirit”, and ensure that the agreement is not violated any longer. The two sides agreed to exercise restraint in case of any conflict, and resolve the matter using existing mechanisms of hotline contacts and border flag meetings at the level of local commanders.