A group of retired senior intelligence officials from India and Pakistan has called for cooperation between the two countries in combating terrorism. In a joint paper, the group highlights how cooperation between intelligence services on the issue of terrorism serves the vital interests of both countries. The group also offers up specific ways to realistically pursue such cooperation.
The joint call emerged from a series of meetings held as part of the Ottawa Dialogue, an ongoing program at the University of Ottawa that regularly brings together senior figures from India and Pakistan to discuss stability and security in South Asia and to make recommendations on these issues. This document was written by members of a branch of the program that specifically focuses on intelligence issues between India and Pakistan. The program is led by Professor Peter Jones of the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the Faculty of Social Sciences.
The paper outlines three steps that both countries could take to learn from one another and to institutionalise their collaboration in combating terrorism. First, the authors of the paper believe that security and intelligence services in India and Pakistan should exchange best practices and the lessons they have learned in their respective efforts to deal with terrorism. Second, they discuss how India and Pakistan should engage in specific cooperative efforts to police cross-border criminal activity as well as combat terrorist groups that both countries regard as dangerous. Finally, the authors conclude that the two countries should establish regular and formalized contacts at the official level and the authors outline specific ideas on how to do so.
In light of the recent terrorist attack on a school in Peshawar, cooperation between India and Pakistan in the face of terrorism has never been more important.
For further information on the Ottawa Dialogue, please contact Peter Jones at peter.jones@uOttawa.ca.