Deuba meets SAARC lead­ers, but not Modi

People's Review - - NEWS - By Our Re­porter

Kathmandu, Sept. 22: Prime Min­is­ter Sher Ba­hadur Deuba held sep­a­rate bi­lat­eral meet­ings with the Heads of State/Gov­ern­ment of SAARC coun­tries. How­ever, he did not hold any meet­ing with In­dian Prime Min­is­ter Nare­dra Modi. On Thurs­day the Prime Min­is­ter held meet­ings with the lead­ers of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Pak­istan and Sri Lanka on the side­lines of the UNGA in New York on Thurs­day. Mat­ters of com­mon bi­lat­eral and in­ter­na­tional in­ter­ests fig­ured dur­ing the meet­ings. Dur­ing the meet­ing with Afghan Pres­i­dent Ashraf Ghani, the two lead­ers dis­cussed ways to fur­ther strength­en­ing bi­lat­eral ties, a press state­ment is­sued by the Per­ma­nent Mis­sion of Nepal to the United Na­tions, New York said to­day. Sim­i­larly, dur­ing the bi­lat­eral meet­ing be­tween Prime Min­is­ter Deuba and Prime Min­is­ter Sheikh Hasina Wazed, the two lead­ers laid em­pha­sis on en­hanc­ing trans­port con­nec­tiv­ity, and util­is­ing the BBIN (Bangladesh, Bhutan, In­dia, Nepal) frame­work. The two lead­ers also talked about en­hanc­ing en­ergy co­op­er­a­tion and joint in­vest­ment in Nepal's hy­dropower. Like­wise, in the meet­ing with Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, the Prime Min­is­ter of Pak­istan, the two lead­ers ex­changed views on dif­fer­ent as­pects of bi­lat­eral re­la­tions. The Prime Min­is­ter of Pak­istan dur­ing the meet­ing said that Pak­istan was ready to hold the SAARC sum­mit as soon as its mem­ber states were ready. Nepal is the chair of the re­gional or­gan­i­sa­tion. In the meet­ing with Sri Lankan Pres­i­dent Maithri­pala Sirisena, his­toric and re­li­gious link­ages be­tween Nepal and Sri Lanka were high­lighted. The Prime Min­is­ter re­called the in­vi­ta­tion ex­tended by the Pres­i­dent of Nepal dur­ing her visit to Sri Lanka. In re­sponse, the Pres­i­dent reaf­firmed that he would visit Nepal at a con­ve­nient date, which will be fi­nalised later through ap­pro­pri­ate diplo­matic chan­nels. Dur­ing those meet­ings, Nepal, as chair of SAARC, em­pha­sised on the need for fur­ther deep­en­ing re­gional co­op­er­a­tion and con­nec­tiv­ity and in this re­gard called for host­ing the SAARC Sum­mit at the ear­li­est con­ve­nient date. Prime Min­is­ter Deuba also shared Nepal's re­cent po­lit­i­cal de­vel­op­ments in­clud­ing the suc­cess­ful con­clu­sion of elec­tions to the lo­cal bod­ies. But it is not known why no meet­ing was held be­tween Deuba and Modi. PM Deuba was sched­uled to ad­dress the UN Gen­eral Assem­bly on Satur­day, Septem­ber 23. Ear­lier, Deputy Prime Min­is­ter Krishna Ba­hadur Ma­hara did not at­tend the re­cep­tion hosted by US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump for tech­ni­cal rea­sons. Re­ports from New York had it that DPM Ma­hara was not al­lowed to at­tend the re­cep­tion as he was car­ry­ing in­vi­ta­tion card sent to Pres­i­dent Bid­hya Devi Bhan­dari. Mean­while, DPM Ma­hara had sep­a­rate bi­lat­eral meet­ings with Retno Les­tari Pri­ansari Mar­sudi, For­eign Min­is­ter of In­done­sia, and Retno Les­tari Pri­ansuri Mar­sudi, For­eign Min­is­ter of Bahrain. DPM Ma­hara also held a meet­ing with Achim Steiner, UNDP Ad­min­is­tra­tor. Dur­ing the meet­ing, Ma­hara thanked the Ad­min­is­tra­tor for the con­tin­ued sup­port of UNDP in the so­cio-eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment of Nepal. The UNDP Ad­min­is­tra­tor ex­pressed as­sur­ances of UNDP sup­port for the so­cio-eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment of Nepal. DPM Ma­hara also at­tended the 8th Min­is­te­rial Break­fast Meet­ing of Group of Friends of Me­di­a­tion hosted by Fin­land and Turkey. Speak­ing at the event, he stressed that me­di­a­tion should pro­mote the em­pow­er­ment of par­ties, en­abling them to make well­con­sid­ered de­ci­sions to re­solve con­flicts. Like­wise, Asha Khanal Koirala, Min­is­ter for Women, Chil­dren and So­cial Wel­fare rep­re­sented Nepal at the Min­is­te­rial Meet­ing of Asia Co­op­er­a­tion Di­a­logue (ACD) held in New York Thurs­day.

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