Several regional leaders participating in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit on Thursday have called for an inclusive government in Afghanistan where Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the global community should not abandon Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover.

In a recorded video statement, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said Afghanistan was the focus of discussions between the PM and the regional leaders.

Chaudhry said, “All regional leaders agree that if a stable government in Afghanistan is to be achieved then the country should not be abandoned. It should be rather engaging. Afghans should not be left alone at this critical juncture. Efforts should continue for an inclusive government there.”

He said that all neighbouring countries of Afghanistan are in consensus to strive for stability in the war-torn country.

Prime Minister Khan met with the presidents of Belarus, Uzbekistan, Iran, and Kazakhstan on the sidelines of the SCO summit in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

Khan warned the leaders he met on the sidelines of the summit that a failure to stabilise Afghanistan could destabilise the entire region.

The PM office said that in his meeting with Iran’s newly-elected President Dr Seyyed Ebrahim Raisi, Khan hailed Iran’s support for Pakistan’s initiative on engagement with Afghanistan’s neighbouring countries for a coordinated approach.

According to a statement by the Iranian presidency, Raisi said, “We should try to help Afghanistan form a government that includes all groups based on the will of the people of the country. The key to solving Afghanistan’s problems is to form an inclusive government and prevent foreign interference in the country’s affairs.”

In their meeting, Khan and the President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko also urged the international community to stand by the Afghan people to avoid a humanitarian crisis and contribute to the cause of stabilising the economy.

Prime Minister also held meetings with Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev and President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev where Khan stressed the necessity of a peaceful Afghanistan to maintain regional security.

The plenary session of the SCO summit is set to be held on Friday today. While the leaders are expected to discuss the resolution of the Afghan crisis but it is unlikely that the Taliban government will get the region’s recognition during the summit. Afghanistan currently holds observer status at the SCO, but Kabul was not invited for the ongoing summit as the members of the bloc are yet to recognise its new government.

The story was filed by the News Desk.
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