The 19th Saarc Summit to be held in Pakistan in November has been postponed.
With India’s decision to pull out from the summit on Tuesday followed by Bangladesh, Bhutan and Afghanistan, the November 9-10 summit automatically stands postponed or cancelled.
The formal announcement of the postponement will be made later by the Kathmandu-based Saarc Secretariat, in accordance with and suggestions from Nepal, the current chair of the regional grouping.
Nepal, as current chair of Saarc, has received letters from India, Bhutan and Bangladesh where they have categorically expressed their inability to participate in the summit due to tension in a part of the region.
Diplomatic sources told IANS that another member, Afghanistan, has also expressed its inability to attend the summit but Nepal has not received a formal letter in this respect yet.
“We will make our position public soon,” said a senior Nepal foreign ministry official, adding that as the Foreign Minister is travelling to the US to attend the UNGA, it will take some days for Nepal to come up with its position.
After India decided not to attend the summit in Pakistan, it is now Sri Lanka that is likely to host the summit.