Pakistan will not attend tobacco conference in India

The latest fallout of strained diplomatic ties between the nuclear-armed neighbours, a minister said on Friday, “Pakistan won’t attend a world tobacco control conference in India next week.” Delegates from regarding 180 nations are expected to attend the conference. The who (FCTC) Framework Convention on Tobacco management, India is hosting the biennial conference of the only world treaty aimed at deterring tobacco use.

It had launched retaliatory “surgical strikes” against Muslim militants in Pakistan within the wake of a raid on an Indian army camp that left nineteen troopers dead, Relations between Pakistan and India have soured in recent weeks when New Delhi. Saira Afzal Tarar, Pakistan’s junior minister of health services regulation and coordination, told, “It’s a very important meeting on tobacco, however our visit doesn’t seem feasible due to ongoing tensions.”

Tarar said, Pakistani health ministry officials had not however secured visas to attend the conference. Artillery duels and skirmishes on the border dividing the Jammu and Kashmir region have surged since. Pakistan says the claim is false and the episode was normal shelling by its neighbour.

Without giving any reason for the choice, an official of the FCTC secretariat, Guangyuan Liu, told reporters in New Delhi on Thursday, Pakistan was invited to the conference however said it might not be able to attend. India’s foreign ministry spokesperson couldn’t immediately be reached for comment, “1 or 2 officials of the health ministry had applied for visa to attend the conference, however i believe they’re facing problems in getting it.”

Topics for discussion include alternative livelihoods for tobacco farmers, e-cigarettes and trade and investment problems. The conference can run from Monday to November twelve. Conference decisions on treaty provisions can have a direct bearing on a global tobacco industry that Euromonitor International estimates is worth $784 billion this year.