Representatives from the United States and Taliban-led interim Afghanistan government would attend the extraordinary session of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) scheduled in Islamabad on December 19.

This was confirmed by the Foreign Office spokesman while detailing the 17th Extraordinary Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the OIC, to be hosted by Pakistan in Islamabad.

The first Extraordinary Session of the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers was also held in Islamabad, in January 1980, also to consider the situation in Afghanistan while the last CFM hosted by Pakistan was in 2007.

The session is being convened at the initiative of Saudi Arabia.

The spokesman said that besides the foreign ministers from the OIC member states and observers, participants would also include special invitees from the United Nations system, international financial institutions and some non-member states including the United States, United Kingdom, France, China, Russia, Germany, Italy and Japan, as well as the European Union.

The Afghan Interim Government would also be represented at the CFM, the foreign office said.

The meeting is being convened in the backdrop of the aggravating humanitarian situation in Afghanistan and the CFM is expected to explore avenues for containing and reversing the rapidly deteriorating humanitarian crisis, especially in terms of food shortages, displacement of people and a potential economic collapse.

Pakistan has always maintained that continued engagement of the international community with Afghanistan is imperative and hosting of the CFM is another manifestation of Pakistan’s intense diplomatic outreach to consolidate support for the people of Afghanistan.