Pakistan Isolated After Bid To Get Taliban Included In SAARC Meet
Posted on September 22nd, 2021

Courtesy NDTV

SAARC Foreign Ministers Meet: Sources said SAARC members could not reach a consensus on Pakistan’s request or give the Taliban a guarantee it could attend.

New Delhi: 

Pakistan found itself isolated on the global stage this week after an attempt to generate support for the Taliban – which seized power in Afghanistan last month – and allow the group a seat at Saturday’s meeting of Foreign Ministers from SAARC nations was rejected.

Also rejected was Pakistan’s demand Nepal – the SAARC chair – provide written assurances Ghulam Isaczai, who represents Afghanistan’s ousted government at the United Nations, would not be allowed to attend.

Sources said SAARC members could not reach a consensus on Pakistan’s request or give the Taliban guarantees it could attend the meet scheduled to take place on the sidelines of the ongoing United Nations General Assembly.

As a result, the meeting of Foreign Ministers from eight South Asian countries was cancelled. The SAARC nations are Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan.

A senior Indian government functionary told NDTV Pakistan insisted the Taliban attend the meeting, but no other country had agreed to this demand.

The Taliban is not recognised by India as the representative of the Afghan people.

The groups is also not recognised by other countries, with senior members of its new cabinet still blacklisted by the United Nations and on ‘wanted’ lists by American agencies.

Russia and China also do not, as yet, recognise the Taliban.

The new Taliban regime has “no authority”, the Indian government functionary told NDTV and stressed the group could not, therefore, stake claim to speak on global platforms. Pakistan’s “mid-wife” role in support of the Taliban had left it exposed, the functionary declared.


The Taliban’s Doha-based spokesperson Suhail Shaheen

The Taliban has also written to the UN Secretary-General asking for permission to address the 76th General Assembly in New York this week and have nominated Doha-based spokesperson Suhail Shaheen as Afghanistan’s UN ambassador.

News agency Reuters reports the move sets up a showdown with Ghulam Isaczai, and it is doubtful permission will be given.

UN acceptance of the Taliban will be an important step in the group’s bid for international recognition, which could help unlock funds needed by the cash strapped Afghan economy.

The last time the Taliban was in power (1996-2001), the ambassador of the toppled Afghan government remained the UN representative after decisions over the Taliban’s claims were deferred.

2 Responses to “Pakistan Isolated After Bid To Get Taliban Included In SAARC Meet”

  1. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    SAARC is among the worst. Comparing SAARC with ASEAN (Association for South East Asian Nations) which comes the closest to regional organization along the lines of culture and religion ASEAN is light years ahead. ASEAN is made up of Brunei, Cambodia. Myanmar, Indonesia, Singapore, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, The Philippines, and Timor for a total population of around 650 million. It has taken the brunt of the Vietnam war, the Cambodian genocide, the bombing of Laos (which became the most bombed nation in history) and still emerged with a combined gdp is 3.1 trillion dollars.

    SAARC (South Asian Asian Assoc for Regional Cooperation) made up of Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and the Maldives escaped the kind of destruction of the great wars and spared the horrors of Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos. Its total population is around 1 billion 750 million yet its combined gdp is 3.08 trillion.

    At this level Pakistan is way ahead. The 62 billion dollar CPEC is the largest FDI ever procured by any South Asian nation since their independence in 1947. The largest FDI India received to date is 49 billion. Pakistan is being transformed into the developed nation with direct rail links to every Eurasian mega market from Europe to the West and China to the East. In that sense it is India that is left out along with America who spent the last 20 years bombing Afghanistan at the cost of 2 Trillion and ending in defeat

  2. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    When it comes to Afghanistan America lost the most. That nation has 3 trillion dollars worth of natural resources and of that its Lithium deposits could rival Bolivia or Peru. It could emerge as the “Saudi Arabia” in mineral wealth. Both Russia and China want access to Afghanistan. Russia had a pro Russian government till the US funded the Mujahidin against it beginning in 1981. China wants Afghanistan for its mineral wealth and as a gateway to its Belt and Road system. Pakistan is the only Muslim nation that was created as a Homeland and has a sizable population that speaks Pashtun. It has also hosted the largest population of Afghan refugees. Iran is its other neighbor and the Iranian revolution created a Muslim theocracy. When it comes to friends and neighbors, Afghanistan is sitting quite well.

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