In news– Prime Minister of India virtually participated in 21st Meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the SCO.
Key highlights of the meeting-
- The meeting was chaired by H.E. Emomali Rahmon, the President of Tajikistan.
- In his address, the Prime Minister highlighted the problems caused by growing radicalisation and extremism in the broader SCO region.
- He noted that recent developments in Afghanistan could further exacerbate this trend towards extremism.
- He offered to share Indian digital technologies with other SCO members.
- This is the first SCO Summit being held in a hybrid format and the fourth that India has participated in as a full-fledged member of SCO.
- This Summit assumes significance as the organization is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.
- The SCO Summit was followed by an Outreach session on Afghanistan between SCO and the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO).
The Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO)(led by Russia)-
- CSTO is an intergovernmental military alliance in Eurasia that consists of selected post-Soviet states.
- The Collective Security Treaty Organization originates from the conclusion of the Collective Security Treaty, which was signed in Tashkent (Uzbekistan) on May 15, 1992 by the heads of Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
- Later, it was joined by Azerbaijan, Belarus and Georgia (1993).
- The treaty entered into force upon completion of the national ratification procedures on April 20, 1994.
- The CSTO charter reaffirmed the desire of all participating states to abstain from the use or threat of force.
About the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO)-
- SCO is a permanent intergovernmental international organisation.
- The creation of SCO was announced on 15 June 2001 in Shanghai (China) by the Republic of Kazakhstan, the People’s Republic of China, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan, and the Republic of Uzbekistan.
- The SCO Charter was signed during the St.Petersburg SCO Heads of State meeting in June 2002, and entered into force on 19 September 2003.
- India was made an observer at the SCO in 2005.
- During the meeting of Heads of State Council of SCO ON 8-9 June 2017 in Astana the status of a full member of the Organization was granted to the Republic of India and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
- India and Pakistan became its permanent members in 2017.
- SCO’s main goals are as follows:
- strengthening mutual trust and neighbourliness among the member states;
- promoting their effective cooperation in politics, trade, the economy, research, technology and culture, as well as in education, energy, transport, tourism, environmental protection, and other areas
- making joint efforts to maintain and ensure peace, security and stability in the region; and
- moving towards the establishment of a democratic, fair and rational new international political and economic order.
- The organisation has two permanent bodies — the SCO Secretariat based in Beijing and the Executive Committee of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) based in Tashkent.
- The SCO’s official languages are Russian and Chinese.
- The Council of National Coordinators of SCO Member States (CNC) acts as the SCO coordination mechanism.