India set to invite PM Imran to SCO regional summit
NEW DELHI: India said on Thursday that Prime Minister Imran Khan will be invited to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) annual meeting in a shocking development.
“All eight members of SCO as well as four observer states and other international dialogue partners will be invited to attend the meeting,” Indian Foreign Ministry spokesman Raveesh Kumar told media sources.
The decision to accept the invitation will depend on Pakistan’s Premier Imran Khan, he added.
In June last year, Premier Imran attended the 19th meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Kyrgyzstan where he also held meetings on the sidelines of the summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Viladimir Putin.
Since becoming a member of SCO in 2017, Pakistan has participated actively in various aspects at all levels including foreign affairs, defense, national security, economy and trade, science and technology, empowerment of youth and women, tourism and media.
India is scheduled to host for the first time this year’s meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of Government.
SCO member states include China, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Pakistan.
Tensions between the two nuclear-armed neighbors escalated in February last year, following a suicide bombing by a young Kashmiri, on an army convoy killing over 40 Indian soldiers, the deadliest single attack on its forces in Occupied Jammu and Kashmir in three decades.