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Nepal To Initiate For Holding 19th SAARC Summit: FM Mahat

KATHMANDU: Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr Prakash Sharan Mahat, today said Nepal would take necessary initiative and hold discussions with the member countries to press for holding 19th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit, which has been postponed after India-Pakistan relations soured in wake of terrorist attacks and cross-border skirmishes.

Speaking to journalists at the Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) upon his arrival back home from the 71st Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Minister Mahat said the SAARC member states must be sensitive towards holding the Summit by insuring the participation of everyone.

SAARC is an important forum for advancing regional cooperation and development, the Minister stated while underlining the fact that harmonious relations between the member states would enhance the utilization of the association and stoke regional development. The 19th SAARC was scheduled to take place in Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan, from October 10 to 11.

Foreign Minister Mahat shared that during the participation in the 19th UNGA, the Nepali delegation had presented views mindful of the national interest and necessity. "At the General Assembly I broached a wide range of subjects in a substantive fashion including Nepal's contribution towards world peace through United Nations, the problems faced by landlocked countries, climate change, migrants' security and employment," he said.

On the sidelines of the UNGA, Foreign Minister Mahat had met with US President Barack Obama, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif among other dignitaries.

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