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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 February 2007, 11:54 GMT
S Asia rivals sign nuclear pact
Pranab and Kasuri
Both sides are keen to carry forward the peace process
India and Pakistan have signed an agreement aimed at reducing the risk of accidental nuclear war in the region.

The deal was signed during talks in Delhi between Pakistan's Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri and his Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee.

India also said it would share with Pakistan details of the investigation into the bombing of a cross-border train on Sunday.

The blasts and blaze they caused killed 68 people, most of them Pakistanis.

Details of the deal limiting the risk of an inadvertent nuclear conflict were not made available, but officials say it includes confidence-building measures related to each country's nuclear arsenal.

Both countries have nuclear-capable weapons and have come close to war several times.

Two years ago, they agreed to give each other notice of nuclear missile tests and in 1985 they signed an accord not to attack each other's nuclear installations.

Share information

The two sides condemned the blasts on the Samjhauta (Friendship) Express from Delhi to Lahore and vowed to continue with the peace process.

The governments of India and Pakistan should not allow the perpetrators of this incident to achieve their objectives
Khurshid Kasuri
Pakistani foreign minister

"Whatever information is available regarding the blasts, will be shared with Pakistan," Mr Mukherjee told reporters.

The two countries established a joint panel last year to share intelligence to help fight terrorism.

"The investigation of the blasts will be carried out by India. The objective of the joint mechanism is to share information and act on that," Mr Mukherjee said.

Mr Kasuri said the blasts would be high on the agenda at the panel's meeting in Islamabad in March.

Mr Mukherjee said the joint survey of Sir Creek - a disputed marshland between India and Pakistan - was progressing smoothly.

He said India had handed over a list of its citizens who wanted to respond to a Pakistani invitation to visit relatives being held in Pakistani jails.

The two sides also discussed issues such as co-operation in education, information technology, science and environment.

Observers say while the attack has cast a cloud over the talks between the two foreign ministers, it could inject urgency into the long-running process.

Painful search

Meanwhile, families from Pakistan have been arriving at the hospital in the town of Panipat in northern India, 80km (50 miles) from Delhi, looking for lost relatives after the attack.

India train attack

The BBC's Dan Isaacs reports from Panipat that so far 18 bodies have been identified. He says relatives have been unable to identify anyone else because the bodies were so badly burnt by the blaze in two carriages of the train.

Blood samples from close relatives are being taken to try to match them with the victims. Our correspondent says the process could take anything from four to six weeks.

It is not clear who was behind the attack on the train and no group has claimed responsibility.

On Tuesday, Indian police issued images of two men they believe got off the train just before the attack.

Similar attacks in the past have been blamed by India on Pakistan-based militants.

The bombing of commuter trains in Mumbai last year effectively derailed peace talks for many months - although allegations of Pakistani involvement were never proved and vehemently rejected by Islamabad.

The twice-weekly cross-border Friendship Express - one of only two rail links between India and Pakistan - was restarted in 2004 after a two-year gap as part of the peace process.

Talks have been going on for three years, but have made little headway on key issues such as the dispute over Kashmir.


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
The deal was signed during talks in Delhi



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