Nepal says situation in Pak not conducive for SAARC Summit
Nepal, the current Chair of SAARC, on Saturday had said that it will hold talks with member countries to press for holding the postponed Summit.
New Delhi: The current situation in Pakistan is not conducive to host the 19th SAARC Summit, Nepal's foreign office said on Sunday.
“Nepal regrets that regional environment is not conducive to host 19th SAARC Summit in Islamabad,” it said in a statement.
Nepal said it strongly believes that "an environment of peace and stability is essential for a meaningful regional cooperation".
The statement comes after thousands of people took to the streets to protest against the atrocities committed by the Pakistan Army and the ISI in the Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK).
As current Chair of SAARC, Nepal underscores need for creating a conducive regional environment for the SAARC Summit, the statement said, adding, to achieve peace and stability, SAARC member states must ensure their territories aren't used for cross-border terrorism.
Nepal "unequivocally condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations" and expresses its solidarity in the global fight against terrorism," it said, adding the country has always condemned all acts of terrorism in the region.
"Most recently, Nepal has condemned the terrorist attack on Indian Army base in Uri, Kashmir on September 18, that resulted in the loss of life of Indian soldiers," it noted.
It further said that to achieve peace and stability in the region, "SAARC member states must, among others, ensure that their respective territories are not used by terrorists for cross-border terrorism".
Nepal "regrets that regional environment is not conducive" to host the next Summit, earlier scheduled for November 9-10 in Islamabad, it said, adding that host Pakistan has informed it about the postponement of the meet.
It said it will initiate "necessary consultation" for holding the next summit.
"As the current Chair of SAARC, Nepal underscores the need for creating a conducive regional environment for the SAARC Summit. Nepal will initiate necessary consultation on successfully holding the 19th Summit with the participation of all member states," the statement said.
Nepal, the current Chair of SAARC, had said on Saturday that it will hold talks with member countries to press for holding the postponed Summit.
Nepalese Foreign Minister Prakash Sharan Mahat had said SAARC member states must be sensitive towards holding the Summit by ensuring the participation of every member.
However, it has changed that position now.
The 19th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation Summit was scheduled to be held in Islamabad from November 9-10.
But it was postponed after India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka pulled out, citing terrorism concerns in the region.
Mahat said that Pakistan as host should make a conducive environment for holding the summit.
Citing continuous cross-border terrorism by Pakistan, India said last week that "in the prevailing circumstances, the Government of India is unable to participate in the proposed Summit in Islamabad".
South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), the eight-member bloc, includes Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, the Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.