UFA, Russia: Pakistan and India have been given full membership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a Eurasian political, economic and military organisation.
The full membership was granted by the SCO Council of Heads of State on Friday and now Pakistan will have to fulfill certain statutory and legal requirements before the country formally becomes a full member.
Earlier Pakistan and India along with Iran, Afghanistan and Mongolia held the observer status of the SCO which was founded by was founded in 2001 in Shanghai by the leaders of Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
Meanwhile addressing the SCO Summit being held in the Russian City of Ufa on Friday, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif described the inclusion of new member states in the SCO including Pakistan as a turning point in the history of the forum, and added that he is honoured to represent his country at this moment.
The prime minister said that the SCO’s expansion would prove a watershed in the changing geopolitical landscape of the Eurasian belt.
Sharif on the occasion called for regional stability and economic integration to achieve the objectives of peace and development.
The prime minister said that the SCO countries must work together to mitigate differences, resolve outstanding disputes and create a favourable environment for the betterment of their peoples.
Sharif said that the organization provides a useful forum to Pakistan in promoting peace and stability in South Asia, Afghanistan and Central Asia. He said that cordial and mutually beneficial economic relations with the SCO member states will be our foreign policy priority.
The premier said that Pakistan believes peace in Afghanistan and Central Asia is crucial to regional connectivity and trade cooperation.