Pakistan in a letter has urged the World Bank to fulfill its role regarding the Indus Water Treaty (IWT) and move ahead with the appointment of a Chairman of the Court of Arbitration. The letter written by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar to World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim, was in response to the latter’s letter of December 12 and their decision to pause the process of empanelment of the Court of Arbitration, reports the Radio Pakistan.
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Dar, said in his letter, that this decision of the World Bank will seriously prejudice Pakistan’s interests and rights under the Indus Waters Treaty 1960. The letter to Kim has been sent with approval of all concerned stakeholders. It strongly conveys that the matter of appointment of a Chairman of the Court of Arbitration has been inordinately delayed. It urged the World Bank to execute its obligations under the Indus Waters Treaty.
The Finance Minister noted that the pause proposed by the World Bank President will merely prevent Pakistan from approaching a competent forum and having its grievances addressed. The letter noted that the Indus Waters Treaty 1960 does not provide for a situation wherein a Party can “pause” performance of its obligations under the Treaty.
Earlier this month, the World Bank asked both India and Pakistan to consider alternative ways to resolve their disagreements over the Indus Water Treaty Dispute 1960. The bank said it is temporarily halting the appointment of a neutral expert as requested by India, and the Chairman of the Court of Arbitration, as requested by Pakistan, to resolve issues regarding two hydroelectric power plants under construction by India along the Indus Rivers system.=