Current Affairs Today

Pakistan announces postponement of 19th SAARC Summit in Islamabad

Pakistan has postponed the 19th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit after India and four other countries announced to boycott the Summit.

The summit was schedule to be held on November 9th and 10th, 2016 in Islamabad, capital city of Pakistan.

Besides, it was also announced that new set of dates for holding the summit at Islamabad will be announced soon by Nepal, the Chair of SAARC.

Comment

Pakistan’s decision is a boost for India’s diplomatic efforts to corner Pakistan over the terror attack at Ur. It also comes a day after Pakistan suffered humiliating Indian cross-border raids (surgical strikes) on terrorist launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).

Background

Earlier India and three other countries Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Bhutan in a synchronized effort, had informed the SAARC Secretariat that their leaders will not attend the summit citing concerns over cross-border terrorism in the region. Later, Sri Lanka also expressed its unwillingness to attend the Summit. The move by the five countries means the Summit cannot go ahead as the SAARC charter mandates that all decisions of the regional bloc must be made unanimously. The absence of even one member-state leads to the automatic postponement or cancellation of a Summit.

About the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC)