SAARC to hold next summit in Pakistan: FM Qureshi

NEW YORK: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that the members of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) decided to hold its next summit in Islamabad.
According to the foreign minister, Prime Minister Imran Khan would chair the next SAARC summit to be held on mutually convenient dates as proposed by Pakistan.
The foreign minister added that all the member states, except India, agreed to hold the next summit-level meeting in Pakistan.
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The decision was taken in a ministerial-level meeting of the SAARC members in New York on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly session (UNGA).
Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that he proposed the SAARC member countries that the summit level meeting was essential if they really wanted to exploit the region’s true potential in tourism, economy and other sectors, and discuss their disputes.
According to Qureshi, the last summit was scheduled to be held in Islamabad in 2016, which could not be held due to Indian objections. However, India this time remained silent in that regard.
He said that the SAARC was a forum where the regional countries could discuss disputes and find out their solutions.
SAARC is the regional intergovernmental organization of states in South Asia. Its member states include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. It was founded in Dhaka on 8 December 1985. Its secretariat is based in Kathmandu, Nepal.
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