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Indian position on Siachen unchanged: Antony

New Delhi, May 8 - There has been no change in India's position on the withdrawal of forces from Siachen, the world's highest and coldest battlefield, and talks are scheduled with Pakistan on the issue June 2, parliament was informed Tuesday.

'Don't know where this confusion has come from. I would like to clarify India's position ... we are neither hardening nor softening (position). We are standing then and there,' Defence Minister A.K. Antony said while replying to a debate in the Rajya Sabha on the functioning of his ministry.

'Till today, 12 rounds of India-Pakistan dialogue have been held on Siachen and next will be on June 2 ... don't expect dramatic decision as it is a very complicated and sensitive issue,' he added.

Antony noted that Pakistan has been seeking the demilitarization of Siachen without agreeing to authenticate the actual ground position line (AGPL). India is insisting on this as a prerequisite for withdrawing its forces from Siachen.

'We have not changed position and our position remains same.'

On Monday, Antony said in the Lok Sabha: 'In view of the recent avalanche resulting in heavy casualties at Siachen, Pakistan has requested India for withdrawal of their respective troops from the region.'


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