January 28, 2023

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26 jan 2023

India invites Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto for SCO meetings: Report

India invites Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto for SCO meetings: Report

Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto
Image Source : PTI Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto

India has invited Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Atta Bandial and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari to attend meetings of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) that also includes Russia and China, a media report said.

India currently holds the presidency of the SCO which comprises Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Iran and Central Asian States, The Express Tribune reported.

As president of the SCO, New Delhi is set to host a series of events, including a conference of the chief justices of member states, meeting of the foreign ministers and a summit in 2023.

The meeting of Chief Justices of the SCO is scheduled for March while the Foreign Ministers will meet in May.

Official sources confirmed to The Express Tribune on Monday that India shared the invitations with Pakistan for the Chief Justice and Foreign Minister.

It is, however, not clear whether the Chief Justice and the Foreign Minister will attend both the events or depute someone to represent Pakistan.

Pakistan hasn’t yet responded to the Indian invite, according to sources.

Given the SCO is an important forum because of the presence of China and Russia, Pakistan is unlikely to stay out of the events, reports The Express Tribune.

Both Pakistan and India were accepted as full members of the influential organisation a few years back after they committed not to undermine the SCO work because of their bilateral disputes.

The meeting of the SCO Foreign Ministers is due to take place in Goa, Express Tribune reported.

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