DATE=8/3/2000 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=INDIA / KASHMIR / L NUMBER=2-265108 BYLINE=JIM TEEPLE DATELINE=NEW DELHI CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: Indian negotiators in Kashmir have ended a first round of talks with representatives of a leading separatist militant group that declared a cease-fire last week. V-O-A's Jim Teeple reports both sides have agreed to meet again. TEXT: It was high drama in Srinigar - the summer capital of India's Jammu and Kashmir State - as Hizbul Mujahadeen commanders met for the first time with India's home secretary. Both sides had warm words for each other following their meeting - agreeing to meet again to see how a three-month cease-fire declared last week by Hizbul Mujahadeen can be made permanent. That will not be easy. Following their talks with Indian officials, Hizbul commanders in Srinigar said Pakistan must be included in talks on the future of Kashmir - something India rejects. Speaking from his base in Pakistan, the chief of Hizbul Mujahadeen says he will consider ending the cease-fire next week if India does not agree to include Pakistan in talks. Coming just a day after the mass killings in Jammu and Kashmir the talks were an encouraging sign for many. Speaking in New Delhi, the U-S Ambassador to India Richard Celeste said he is encouraged by the dialogue. // CELESTE ACT // Everywhere in the world, if you examine where there has been a move towards peaceful dialogue the extremists have struck out with violence and tried to derail the process. I am confident that is the same phenomenon that is at work here. So the hope is that a determined government and people of goodwill and courage in Kashmir can come together can come together and move the dialogue forward. // END ACT // Meanwhile, India's Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee traveled to Kashmir to meet with families of some of those who died in the attacks carried out by militants opposed to the cease-fire. Mr. Vajpayee said has said this week's killings would not affect the talks with Hizbul Mujahadeen - pledging also not to take action against Hizbul fighters in the field. The Indian Army announced what they described as a major offensive in Jammu and Kashmir to hunt down those responsible for the attacks. Military commanders say they are making rare use of helicopter gunships in the operation, which is taking place in rugged mountain terrain in the state's Doda district. (SIGNED) NEB/JLT/RAE 03-Aug-2000 09:34 AM EDT (03-Aug-2000 1334 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .