Pashto ( Pax̌tō ; alternatively spelled Paxto, Pukhto, Pakhto, or Pushto), also known in older literature as Afghānī () or Paṭhānī, is an Eastern Iranian language, belonging to the Indo-European family. Pashto is the native language of the Pashtun people of South-Central Asia, and one of the two official languages of Afghanistan. It is also the second-largest regional language of Pakistan, mainly spoken in the west and northwest of the country, and the main language among the Pashtun diaspora around the world. The total number of Pashto-speakers is estimated to be 45–60 million people worldwide. Pashto belongs to the Northeastern Iranian group of the Indo-Iranian branch; however, Ethnologue lists it as Southeastern Iranian. Pashto’s closest relatives are Khotanese, Bactrian, and Pamir languages.