Due to opposition from several Shanghai Cooperation Organisation members, the Taliban leadership was not invited to the summit even though Afghanistan was one of the main topics of discussion for the Council of Heads of State at the SCO summit, international media reported.

This week, on September 15 and 16, Uzbekistan hosts the SCO summit in Samarkand under the theme “dialogue and cooperation in an interconnected world,” to which the Taliban officials are not invited.

The status of Afghanistan’s membership as an observer country in SCO remains unknown as a result of the Taliban’s reinstatement to power, Rahmatullah Nourimbtov, the coordinator for Uzbekistan at the SCO Summit, informed the media.

Along with the heads of the SCO’s full members, China, Russia, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, India, and Pakistan, the Samarkand meeting of SCO will also include Belarus, Iran, and Mongolia as heads of the observer countries.

In the months leading up to the SCO Summit, which started on Thursday the issue of whether or not to invite the Taliban was under discussion, according to foreign media reports.

According to ThePrint, citing diplomatic sources, some countries wanted to include the Taliban in the SCO Summit this year, but others refused.

The issue of the international recognition of the Taliban as the ruling body of Afghanistan is reported to have been the reason for not inviting the Taliban to the summit.

The Taliban Deputy spokesperson also stated the group has not been invited to the SCO summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan.

This occurs when more than a year has elapsed since the Taliban were restored to power, yet no country has recognized the group.


  • Saqalain Eqbal is an Online Editor for Khaama Press. He is a Law graduate from The American University of Afghanistan (AUAF).