New Delhi: Pakistan’s proposal to host the 19th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit failed yet again due to the lack of consensus. The plans to hold the summit in Islamabad was on the agenda of the SAARC foreign ministers virtual meet on Thursday.

According to sources, “Most countries felt it is not an opportune time for the event considering the COVID-19 pandemic..and most member countries were preoccupied with it.”

The summit was scheduled to happen in 2016 in Islamabad but India along with most SAARC countries boycotted it due to the Uri terror attack perpetrated by Pakistan-based terrorists.

The SAARC FMs meet is an annual gathering which has been taking place since 1997 on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). Due to the COVID-19, the meet happened virtually for the first time in 2020. 

In Thursday’s meeting, Secretary-General of SAARC gave a report on the status of regional cooperation since the last informal meeting of the SAARC Council of Ministers took place in New York on September 26, 2019.

In 2019, Pakistan had claimed that consensus has been achieved for the summit but no other country made a public pronouncement on it.

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