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On the release of Pakistani Prisoners of War

August 20, 1999
New Delhi

As a gesture of goodwill, we announced on the eve of the Independence Day of Pakistan (August 13) our readiness to hand over the 8 Pakistani Prisoners of War (POWs) taken in our custody during Pakistan's recent armed intrusion and aggression in Kargil. The Indian authorities have, as required under the Geneva Conventions, approached the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) with full particulars of the POWs, to repatriate them to Pakistan. The ICRC is currently engaged in working out the modalities for their handing over.

Pakistan has not yet acknowledged their POWs. Consequently, their repatriation has not taken place so far. We hope Pakistan will acknowledge their POWs, so that they can return to their families without delay. We also hope that Pakistan will not procrastinate as they did earlier in the case of the return of the dead bodies of their soldiers who died on the Indian side of the Line of Control during Pakistan's intrusion in Kargil.

These soldiers are being will-cared for in the highest traditions of the Indian Army.