Pakistan seeking membership of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

March 27th, 2009 - 7:34 pm ICT by IANS  

Moscow, March 27 (RIA Novosti) Pakistan is seeking full membership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a regional security group, the country’s foreign minister told an international conference in Moscow Friday.
“I hope that one day we will be invited to join this organisation,” Shah Mehmood Qureshi said.

The SCO regional security group comprises Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. Russia took over the presidency of the organisation last August. Iran, India, Mongolia and Pakistan have observer status.

The SCO is currently holding an international conference in Moscow, to discuss the “situation in Afghanistan and its influence on neighbouring states”.

The conference is being attended by foreign ministers and high-level diplomats from SCO member and observer states, as well as Afghanistan, the US, and Turkey.

Qureshi further said that Russia and China could play a key role in improving the situation in the impoverished state.

The UN Secretary General, and heads from the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) are also taking part in the event.

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