The Pashtuns (/ptnz/, /ptnz/ or /ptunz/; Pashto: , Paxtn; singular masculine: , Paxtn, feminine: , Paxtana; also Pukhtuns), historically known as ethnic Afghans (Persian: , Afn) and Pathans (Hindustani: , , Pahn), are an Iranian ethnic group who mainly live in Pakistan and Afghanistan in South-Central Asia. They speak the Pashto language and adhere to Pashtunwali, which is a traditional set of ethics guiding individual and communal conduct. The ethnogenesis of the Pashtun ethnic group is unclear but historians have come across references to various ancient peoples called Pakthas (Pactyans) between the 2nd and the 1st millennium BC, who may be their early ancestors. Their history is mostly spread amongst the present-day countries of Afghanistan and Pakistan, centred on their traditional seat of power in that region.
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