India rejects Pakistan’s invite for Saarc summit
ISLAMABAD – The government of India has decided against participating in the upcoming moot of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc). The refusal came a day after Pakistan invited Indian Premier Narendra Modi to the conference.
Addressing the newsmen on Wednesday, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj categorically stated that there was no way PM Modi would travel to Pakistan for the summit. Whipping up war hysteria, the minister said no dialogue can take place between India and Pakistan till the time the latter puts a curb on ‘terrorist activities emanating from its soil’. The minister claimed that for many years, the Indian government had been asking for Kartarpur crossing – for which Pakistan’s Premier took a lead and announced building a corridor. The politician continued that the Kartarpur corridor ‘doesn’t mean the bilateral dialogue will start because of this’. “We are not responding to the invitation by Pakistan positively because unless and until Pakistan stops terror activities in India, there will be no dialogue, so we will not participate in SAARC,” she alleged.
On Tuesday, Pakistan’s Foreign Office said that it will invite PM Narendra Modi for the SAARC Summit scheduled to be held later this year. Foreign Office spokesman Dr Mohammad Faisal had told media that Prime Minister Imran Khan, after assuming charge, had said that Pakistan was ready to take two steps forward if
India took one. The FO spokesman said Pakistan wants resolution of Kashmir issue through talks, however, India is avoiding the matter adding that the matter has been raised at national and international fora. He said the groundbreaking of Kartarpur border will be our big achievement adding that now policies will be made upon the wish of the public. SAARC summit was scheduled to be held in Pakistan in 2016 but due to tense ties, India declined the invite, causing Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Bhutan to follow suit. India has earlier has hinted at pulling out of the 2018 summit of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC)