The annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is set to be held on Friday, September 17, in Tajikistan’s capital Dushanbe with Prime Minister Narendra Modi leading the Indian delegation virtually at the annual summit. The Afghanistan situation will dominate the agenda of the summit, for which External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will travel to Dushanbe.
According to a Times of India report earlier this month, PM Modi is unlikely to name Taliban in his statement — in keeping with India’s statements on Afghanistan at UNSC and also UN Human Rights Council. India has decided to wait and watch if the Taliban actually walk the talk. Afghanistan is an observer in the SCO.
The SCO and the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) comprising Russia and Central Asian States will hold a joint summit meeting on Afghanistan.
Here Are Points to Note:
• External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met China Foreign Minister Wang Yi on the sidelines of the summit. The two ministers exchanged views on the current situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh as well as on global developments.
• “The EAM conveyed that India had never subscribed to any clash of civilisations theory. He said that India and China had to deal with each other on merits and establish a relationship based on mutual respect. For this, it was necessary that China avoid viewing our bilateral relations from the perspective of its relations with third countries,” a statement by MEA said.
• Ahead of the SCO summit, China on said it is ready to have close communication and coordination with the bloc’s member states and jointly work on Afghanistan to build an open and inclusive political structure in the war-torn country controlled by the Taliban.
• Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with Chinese President Xi Jinping would address the summit via video link. China, which has kept its embassy open in Kabul along with Pakistan and Russia, has maintained close communication with the Taliban’s interim government though it has not formally recognised it.
• PM Modi may, however, raise the issue of terrorism in the region in presence of Pakistani counterpart Imran Khan. The prime minister is expected to address the meeting between 11:30 and and 11:45 am.
• India is expected to raise issues like counter-terrorism, topical issues of regional and international importance and advocate for economic cooperation and people-to-people exchanges between the members of the bloc.
• Imran Khan will have bilateral meetings with other participating leaders on the sidelines, the Pakistan’s Foreign Office said. He is on a two-day official visit to Tajikistan to attend the SCO summit and have bilateral talks with the Tajik leadership on mutual ties.
• “The 21st meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State will be held on September 17 in Dushanbe in a hybrid format. The meeting will be chaired by the President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lead the Indian delegation and address the plenary session of the summit via video-link,” the MEA said. “At Dushanbe, India will be represented by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar,” MEA said in a statement.
• The SCO was founded at a summit in Shanghai in 2001 by the Presidents of Russia, China, Kyrgyz Republic, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. SCO also has four Observer states — Iran, Mongolia, Belarus and Afghanistan and six Dialogue Partners — Azerbaijan, Armenia, Cambodia, Nepal, Turkey and Sri Lanka.Internet Explorer Channel Network