South Asia Monitor: The Agra Summit - August 1, 2001

The three-day summit between Indian prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf, their first contact since Musharraf took power in October 1999, ended without a joint statement. Both sides subsequently stressed their intention to continue working on their countries' troubled relationship. Although few expected a breakthrough at the summit, the leaders' failure to agree on a process for resolving differences between India and Pakistan will strengthen the hard-liners in both countries. The two leaders are due to meet again on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly this fall, as well as later this year in Pakistan. Neither can afford a repeat performance, and both governments have much work to do before Vajpayee and Musharraf meet again.

Mandavi Mehta