India on Tuesday announced that Narendra Modi will not attend November’s SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) summit which will be held in Islamabad. It blamed Pakistan for not creating friendly and safe atmosphere for the summit.
The development came after foreign secretary S Jaishankar summoned Pakistan envoy Abdul Basit and said him that one of the terrorists identified as Hafiz Ahmed in the Uri attack and two other men who supported the terrorists to cross the LoC were from Muzaffarabad in Pakistan occupied Kashmir.
In the meeting Basit said to Jaishankar that Pakistan believed it was Indian security force’s strategy to divert the Kashmir attention, he demanded an international probe on that matter.
Jaishankar as it expected did not want any third agency investigation. He said Basit that India was ready to provide the evidence like DNA samples of terrorists and fingerprints and asked him to assure an investigation with those evidences.
The foreign secretary remembered Basit in the 20th September meeting about the Pakistan’s promise which was made by the then President Pervez Musharraf. In January 2004, Musharraf made a commitment to then Indian PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee that Pakistan would not allow its soil to execute terrorism against India.
The foreign ministry said, “India remains steadfast in its commitment to regional cooperation, connectivity and contacts but believes that these can only go forward in an atmosphere free of terror.”
After India’s announcement, the three other SAARC member countries Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Bhutan have also pulled out of the summit.
This means the summit which would be held in Islamabad can not take place as if one of the eight member withdraws then the summit can not happen.
Afghanistan in a statement said that as a result of enforced terrorism on the soil of Afghanistan, the President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani to carry out his responsibility as the Commander in Chief will not attend the summit.
Bangladesh too unable to attend the summit. It said, “The growing interference in the internal affairs of Bangladesh by one country has created an environment which is not conducive to the successful hosting of the 19th SAARC Summit in Islamabad in November 2016.”
Bhutan confirmed its absence and said that the growing intolerance and terrorism in the nation unable to create proper atmosphere to hold 19th November SAARC summit in Islamabad.
A spokesperson of Foreign ministry, Vikas Swarup tweeted, “Regional cooperation and terror don’t go together. India pulls out of SAARC Summit in Islamabad.”
Srilanka with its support said without India’s support the summit can not be possible.
India and US always want to isolate Pakistan from international ground. With the support of these countries the demand would become stronger and Pakistan would be an ‘terror export’ isolated nation.