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India may boycott its second SAARC Summit in a row, slated to be held in Islamabad, reiterating its stand that Pakistan is yet to rein in terrorist activities targeting India, according to a report by news agency ANI.
The 19th meeting of the heads of state or government of the member countries of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) was scheduled to be hosted by Pakistan in November 2016. However, India pulled out of the event in the wake of militant attacks in Pathankot and Uri. Subsequently, all SAARC members boycotted the summit.
The 20th meeting is going to be held this year and Pakistan is aggressively seeking support from smaller South Asian nations to host the event in Islamabad. It has already received the backing of Sri Lanka and Nepal.
The report comes days after the issue of organising the SAARC Summit came up for discussion during a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Nepalese counterpart KP Sharma Oli, who was in India on a three-day visit.
After the talks, India said it would be difficult to proceed with the SAARC meet.
“The prime minister (Modi) mentioned that he very enthusiastically participated in the Kathmandu (SAARC) Summit, but given the current state of play where there is cross-border terrorism - and this is a disruptive force in the region. It is difficult in such circumstances to proceed with such initiatives," foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale had told reporters.
SAARC Summits are usually held biennially, hosted by a member state in alphabetical order. The member state hosting the event assumes the Chair of the Association. The previous edition of the SAARC summit was held in Kathmandu in 2014, which was attended by PM Modi.