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Days After Saudi Gaffe, Pak PM Imran Khan’s Blunder At Bishkek SCO Summit

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Imran Khan broke diplomatic protocol by sitting at the opening ceremony of the SCO Summit

Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan: 

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has broken diplomatic protocol again – this time at the opening ceremony of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation or SCO Summit held in Kyrgyzstan’s capital Bishkek on Thursday.

In a video shared on the official Twitter handle of his own party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Imran Khan is seen sitting while everyone else stood to welcome the head of states entering the hall.

Mr Khan walked in, went straight to his seat, and sat down despite all other leaders standing till each of the heads of state arrived. Mr Khan, who seemed unaffected even after seeing everyone else standing, stood up briefly only to acknowledge his presence when his name was announced. He could be seen bowing slightly with his hand on his chest when his name is announced. But immediately after that he sits down again, while others continue to stand.

Imran Khan had recently broken the diplomatic protocol at the 14th Organisation of Islamic Cooperation or OIC Summit held in Saudi Arabia earlier this month.

During a meeting with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz at the sidelines of the summit, Imran Khan spoke to the Saudi King’s interpreter and walked off before the message could be translated, leaving the Saudi King standing alone. The video was widely circulated on social media and Imran Khan was severely criticised, both by his countrymen and citizens of Saudi Arabia for apparently disrespecting the king.

Imran Khan and the leaders of the SCO member countries, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi are attending the two-day summit in Kyrgyzstan’s capital Bishkek.

(With inputs from ANI)

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