The Easter Sunday terrorist bombings in Colombo, Sri Lanka, has resulted in the postponement of the 18th Meeting of the Conference of Parties(COP18) of CITES, a multilateral treaty by nations to protect endangered plant and animal species. The meeting, originally scheduled to be held in Colombo between 23rd May to 3rd June, was indefinitely postponed due to security concerns following the 21st April Colombo bombings which claimed more than 250 lives. In a recent message CITES Secretary -General Ivonne Higuero announced that the UN Secretariat is working with the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) to assess the security situation on the ground with their Sri Lankan counterparts, UNDSS officials and the United Nations Resident Coordinator for the nation. The Sri Lankan local media reported that the government had proposed postponing the event to September/October, but the CITES Secretariat, administered by the United Nations Environment Programme and headquartered in Geneva, might favor other options of hosting the conference in August in the Swiss city, or rescheduling to early January 2020, due to the considerable logistics involved.
As reported by Dilrukshi Handunnetti in Mongabay