Bangladesh, India to sign deals on longstanding water sharing, border issues

08:23, July 08, 2011      

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Bangladesh and India on Thursday expressed optimism to sign interim deals on water sharing of the common rivers and on border demarcation during Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit to Dhaka on Sept. 6-7.

Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Dipu Moni and Indian External Affairs Minister SM Krishna came up with the identical views on resolving the outstanding issues at a joint press conference here in Dhaka on Thursday following the official talks between the two Foreign Ministers.

Dipu Moni said the sharing of waters will be done on equity and fair share basis while the demarcation of 6.5 km border, transfer of enclaves and lands in adverse possession will be done under "a package" in the spirit of 1974 Land Boundary Agreement.

About the use of Bangladesh's Chittagong and Mongla ports, she said it would be done under a framework of agreement encompassing India, Nepal and Bhutan.

"It is a part of transit issue. We're trying to come up with a framework under which a number of protocols will be signed and that work is going on," Dipu Moni said.

She said the Joint River Commission has nearly finalized the issue of the sharing water of Teesta and Feni river and "we will be able to sign something during the visit."

Both the foreign ministers reiterated that no insurgent, extremist or terrorist group will be allowed to use the soil of their respective countries to carry out activities inimical to each other's interest.

While talking about cooperation in the energy sector, the Indian External Affairs Minister said India will supply 250 MW of electricity to Bangladesh by the end of 2012 or early 2013 at preferential rate.

The official talks ended through signing of two agreements regarding the protection of investments and movement of Bhutanese vehicles to Bangladesh through India.

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