Published: Sat, June 10, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

UN chief congratulates India, Pakistan on full SCO membership

UN chief congratulates India, Pakistan on full SCO membership

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has congratulated India and Pakistan on getting full membership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a China-dominated security grouping increasingly seen as a counterweight to NATO.

On the sidelines of the SCO Summit, the prime minister held bilateral meetings with the presidents of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan and Russian Federation.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Chinese President Xi Jinping in Astana on the sidelines of the 17th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit and discussed bilateral relations where the latter pointed out that the worldwide environment was undergoing profound and complex changes.

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"There are no winners in this tussle if we have differences on the issue of terrorism", the professor said while stressing the need to counter the threat.

"I have full confidence that the India-SCO cooperation will give a new direction and strength to the fight against terrorism", Modi said.

Guterres said cooperation between the United Nations and the SCO is based on a solid foundation. "We want to deepen the focus on connectivity", he said. The Indian PM also thanked China for its support in the country's accession to the SCO. Respect to sovereignty and regional integrity is necessary.

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Chinese state-run media highlighted Xi's meetings with Kazakh counterpart Nursultan Nazarbayev, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin. China is championing ambitious infrastructure projects, including land and sea links touted as a revival of the ancient Silk Road trade route.

The Prime Minister said Pakistan believes in building cooperative and stronger relationships with worldwide community.

"The two sides should tap into the potential for cooperation, bolster communication and coordination in global affairs, respect each other's core concerns and properly handle differences", he asserted. The news of their murders was made public ahead of the SCO summit held on June 8-9 in which India and Pakistan were admitted as members.

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The speech came less than 36 hours after Trump announced his withdrawal from the 200-nation Paris climate change accord that he said disadvantaged the US.

India, Iran and Pakistan were admitted as observers at the 2005 Astana Summit.

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