Prime Minister Imran Khan arrived in Tajikistan’s capital Dushanbe on Thursday on a two-day visit to attend the 20th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation’s (SCO’s) Heads of State Summit.

“The prime minister was received by Tajik Prime Minister Kokhir Rasulzoda and was accorded a red carpet welcome at Dushanbe International Airport,” according to a tweet by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

PM Khan, while addressing Pakistan-Tajikistan Business Forum, said, “We just wish and pray that finally after 40 years of conflict there will be peace in Afghanistan. It is extremely important for our [Pakistan and Tajikistan] trade for that region to be at peace so there would be better connectivity.”

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“Your president and I will be trying everything to make sure that there is peace especially between the two major communities [Pashtuns and Tajiks] so they get together and there is an inclusive government in Afghanistan”, he added.

Right after his speech, PM Khan met President of Kazakhstan H.E. Kassym-Jomart Tokayev at Dushanbe on the side-lines of SCO.

PM Imran’s talks with the Tajik president will cover “the entire gamut of bilateral relations, especially enhancing trade, economic and investment ties with a particular focus on regional connectivity”, reports Radio Pakistan.

Moreover, the premier will be holding bilateral meetings with other participating leaders as well during the summit.

The SCO summit is the first meeting of the heads of states since the Taliban entered Kabul so all eyes will be on the Afghan representative at the meeting.

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According to details, if there will be representation from Afghanistan, it will be PM Khan’s first interaction with the Afghan interim government, as per The News.

This is the third visit of the prime minister to Central Asia.

The SCO was founded in Shanghai in 2001 by the leaders of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Russia and China.