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* Sri Lankan President may postpone Pakistan visit due to restive situation in Islamabad
Tue, Aug 19, 2014, 08:27 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Aug 19, Colombo: Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa may postpone his visit to Pakistan scheduled for some time later this month due to unrest in that country, government officials told reporters.

Earlier this month the External Affairs Ministry in a statement said that President Rajapaksa will visit Pakistan later this month to hold bilateral discussions but did not mention the dates for the visit.

The President has indicated to the reporters at the Foreign Correspondents Association that he will have to "wait and see" due to the restive situation in the Pakistani capital Islamabad.

Tens of thousands of people protesting in Pakistani capital demanding the government step down have wreaked havoc in the city.

A Joint Press Statement issued on the Pakistan-Sri Lanka Foreign Secretary-level talks held on August 06 in Islamabad said during President Rajapaksa's visit the leaders of the two countries will take stock of the bilateral relations and identify potential areas for cooperation to the mutual benefit of the countries and its people.

The meeting between the foreign secretaries of the two countries was to prepare ground for President Rajapaksa's visit to Pakistan.

A proposed agreement on cooperation in the field of Disaster Management was also to be signed during the President's intended visit to Islamabad.

President Rajapaksa has also indicated that he is keen about discussing the Pakistani refugee situation in Sri Lanka with the government officials of that country.

Sri Lanka has come under severe criticism from UN refugee agency, UNHCR, for summarily deporting Pakistani nationals who have sought refugee status in the island.

** Related Story :: Sri Lankan President to visit Pakistan later this month

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