A crucial meeting of parliamentary leaders in the National Assembly and Senate called by NA Speaker Asad Qaiser for Wednesday (today) in which they were to be briefed by military officials on the current issues of national security was cancelled on Tuesday amid the opposition’s boycott. “The session of parliamentary leaders in the National Assembly and Senate under National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser on Nov 11 [has been] postponed,” the NA Secretariat said via a tweet. “There would have been a briefing on national security in the session. The NA Secretariat has issued the notice of postponement of the session.” Reports said the main objective of the briefing was to make an effort to develop a national consensus on granting “provisional provincial status” to strategically located Gilgit-Baltistan. Though there was no official confirmation from the government or the army’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the reports said it was expected that Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa and head of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt Gen Faiz Hameed would conduct the briefing. The Azad Jammu and Kashmir government, headed by the PML-N, had some reservations over the move to grant the provisional status of the province to GB, the sources said, adding that in the meeting efforts would be made to address their concerns. The list of those invited for the briefing also contained the names of AJK President Masood Khan, AJK Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider, GB Governor Raja Jalal Maqpoon and GB Caretaker Chief Minister Mir Afzal. A day earlier, the country’s two major opposition parties – the PML-N and the PPP – declared that they had not yet decided about participation in the briefing, hinting at a possible boycott of the event. In a statement on Tuesday, Mian Iftikhar Hussain, information secretary of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) – an alliance of 11 opposition parties – announced the PDM’s decision to not participate in the NA speaker’s session. He said that PDM chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman had made the decision after consulting with all the parties that are part of the alliance.