The Iranian peoples or Iranic peoples are an Indo-European ethno-linguistic group that comprise the speakers of Iranian languages, a major branch of the Indo-European language family, as such forming a branch of the Indo-European-speaking peoples. Their historical areas of settlement were on the Iranian plateau (mainly Iran) and certain neighbouring areas of Central Asia (such as Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, western Pakistan, northern Iraq and eastern Turkey, and scattered part of the Caucasus Mountains) reflecting changing geopolitical range of the Persian empires and the Iranian history. Their current distribution spreads across the Iranian plateau, and stretches from Pakistan's Indus River in the east to eastern Turkey in the west, and from Central Asia and the Caucasus in the north to the Persian Gulf in the south – a region that is sometimes called the Iranian cultural continent, or Greater Persia by scholars, and represents the extent of the Iranian languages and influence of the Persian people, through the geopolitical reach of the Persian empire.
The population of Afghanistan is around 30.4 million as of the year 2012, which includes the 2.7 million Afghan refugees that are residing temporarily in Pakistan and Iran. The nation is composed of a multi-ethnic and multi-lingual society, reflecting its location astride historic trade and invasion routes between Central Asia, Southern Asia, and Western Asia. The majority of Afghanistan's population consist of the Iranic peoples, notably the Pashtuns and Tajiks. The Pashtun is the largest group followed by Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek, Aimak, Turkmen, Baloch and others.
Pashto and Dari are both the official languages of the country, Dari (Persian) is spoken by the Tajiks and Hazara people living in Afghanistan while Pashto is spoken widely all over the country as well as in neighboring northernwestern Pakistan. Uzbek language and Turkmen language are spoken in parts of the north. Smaller groups in various parts of the country speak about 30 other languages.