Leaders from eight developing Muslim countries are gathering in Pakistan to discuss how they can increase trade and investment.
Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar Wednesday welcomed to Islamabad delegates from Developing-8 countries. Along with Pakistan, the so-called D-8 countries include Iran, Indonesia, Egypt, Nigeria, Turkey, Bangladesh and Malaysia.
The summit will open Thursday and discussions are scheduled to focus on how to boost trade and address the effects of the global recession within the D-8. Some analysts, however, believe the meeting might be overshadowed by the conflict in the Gaza Strip, as international and regional leaders work to de-escalate the violence there.
The presidents of Iran, Egypt and Indonesia, along with the prime minister of Turkey, will be among those in attendance, as well as corporate and business leaders from D-8 nations.
Ahead of the summit, Pakistan assumed the two-year chairmanship of the group from Nigeria.
In recent years, Islamabad has rarely hosted major international events, mainly because of security threats stemming from the country's fight against the Taliban and other militants, who have conducted suicide bombings against government and military targets.