Tashkent Declaration

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Tashkent Declaration
Signed 10 January 1966 (1966-01-10)
Location Tashkent, Uzbek SSR, USSR

The Tashkent Declaration was a peace agreement between India and Pakistan signed on 10 January 1966 that resolved the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. Peace had been achieved on 23 September by the intervention of the great powers who pushed the two nations to cease fire, afraid the conflict could escalate and draw in other powers.


A meeting was held in Tashkent in the Uzbek SSR, USSR (now Uzbekistan) from 4-10 January 1966 to try to create a more permanent settlement.

The Soviets, represented by Premier Alexei Kosygin, moderated between Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and Pakistani President Muhammad Ayub Khan.

The Tashkent conference, under United Nations, American and Soviet pressure, compelled India to give away the conquered region in Pakistan and the 1949 ceasefire line in Kashmir.


The conference was viewed as a great success and the declaration that was released was hoped to be a framework for lasting peace. The declaration stated that[1] Indian and Pakistani forces would pull back to their pre-conflict positions, pre-August lines, no later than February 25, 1966, the nations would not interfere in each other's internal affairs, economic and diplomatic relations would be restored, there would be an orderly transfer of prisoners of war, and the two leaders would work towards improving bilateral relations.


The agreement was criticized in India because it did not contain a no-war pact or any renunciation of guerrilla warfare in Kashmir. After signing the agreement, Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shashtri died mysteriously in Tashkent.

In accordance with the Tashkent Declaration, talks at the ministerial level were held on 1 and 2 March 1966. Despite the fact that these talks were unsuccessful, diplomatic exchange continued throughout the spring and summer. No result was achieved out of these talks, as there was a difference of opinion over the Kashmir issue. Euphoria had built up during the 1965 war, which had led to the development of a public perception that Pakistan was going to win the war. News of the Tashkent Declaration shocked the people who were expecting something quite different. Things further worsened as Ayub Khan refused to comment and went into seclusion instead of taking the people into confidence over the reasons for signing the agreement. Demonstrations and rioting erupted at various places throughout Pakistan.[2] In order to dispel the anger and misgiving of the people, Ayub Khan decided to lay the matter before the people by addressing the nation on January 14. It was the difference over Tashkent Declaration, which eventually led to the removal of Z. A. Bhutto from Ayub’s government, who later on launched his own party, called the Pakistan People’s Party. Despite the fact that Ayub Khan was able to satisfy the misgiving of the people, there is no doubt that the Tashkent Declaration greatly damaged the image of Ayub Khan, and became one of the many factors that led to his downfall..

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