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20TH SCO SUMMIT IN RUSSIA

20TH SCO SUMMIT IN RUSSIA

DIKSHA SHARMA 10 MINUTES

20TH SCO SUMMIT IN RUSSIA

Five virtual summits are scheduled in November this year. Out of these five summits, two SCO summits will be held in November 2020 with India taking part in both of them, amid border tensions along the LAC in the eastern Ladakh. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Heads of State Summit is scheduled on November 10, 2020, and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Heads of Government Summit is scheduled on November 30, 2020. Prime Minister Modi takes part in the SCO Heads of State Summit which will be hosted by Russia while Foreign Minister S Jaishankar will be attending SCO Heads of Government Summit which will be hosted by India. This article will guide you about the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). The 20th Summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Council of Heads of State was held recently via Video Conferencing. The Meeting was chaired by Russian President Mr. Vladimir Putin.

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE SCO

• Significance of SCO Meet: 20th Summit of SCO Heads of State is important as it brought President Xi Jinping of China and Mr. Modi together in the virtual format even as both sides are caught in the high tension confrontation in Eastern Ladakh along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). This was the first SCO Summit held in Virtual Format and the third meeting that India participated after becoming a full member in 2017. The Republic of Tajikistan assumed chairmanship of SCO for 2021-22. India has proposed to set up a Special Working Group on Innovation and Startups and a Sub Group on Traditional Medicine within SCO. The Prime Minister of India indirectly referred Chinese infrastructure projects in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir and India China standoff at line of actual control and urged members of the SCO to respect “territorial integrity” and “sovereignty” of each other.

• Connectivity: PM highlighted India's role in supporting infrastructure and connectivity development projects in the SCO region. Examples are Chabahar port, The International North–South Transport Corridor (INSTC) is a multi-modal connectivity project to establish transport networks (ship, rail, and road route) for moving freight between India, Russia, Iran, Europe and Central Asia.

• Responsible Global Governance: Bringing changes in global governance will be the focus of India as a non-permanent member of the United Nation (UN) Security Council. From 2021 India will take part in the UN Security Council as a non-permanent member.

• Reformed Multilateralism: In the context of the fallout of the pandemic and the economic downturn, India sought support of the SCO members in attaining a reformed multilateralism. Organized Crime: India highlighted the challenges posed by the smuggling of illegal weapons, drugs and money laundering.

• Strengthening Cultural Heritage: The National Museum of India will hold an exhibition on the Buddhist heritage of the SCO countries and India will host a food festival reflecting the culinary traditions of the SCO region.

SHANGHAI COOPERATION ORGANIZATION (ORIGIN)

All the nations of SCO excluding Uzbekistan, were the members of Shanghai Five Group which was founded on April 26, 1996. The group emerged from a series of border demarcation and demilitarization talks which the four former Soviet Republics held with China. After the accession of Uzbekistan to the Shanghai Five Group, it was named the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). Since the accession of Uzbekistan, two other nations, namely, India and Pakistan, joined the SCO as full members on June 9, 2017, at a summit in Astana, Kazakhstan.

• The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is a permanent international intergovernmental organization which is headquartered in Beijing, China.
• It is a Eurasian political, economic and security organization aiming to maintain peace, security and stability in the region.
• Its creation was announced on 15 June 2001 in Shanghai, China by the leaders of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
• The SCO Charter which formally established the organization was signed in June 2002 and it came into force on September 19, 2003.
• The official language of the organization is Chinese and Russian. It is known as the 'Alliance of the East' and is the largest regional organization in the world in terms of geographical coverage and population. The organization covers nearly half of the human population.
• The organization has two permanent members-- the SCO Secretariat (Beijing) and the Executive Committee of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) (Tashkent). The SCO is seen as a counter-balance to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF SCO

The organization aims at strengthening mutual trust and neighborliness among the member nations.
It also promotes effective cooperation in politics, trade & economy, research & technology and culture.
The SCO aims at enhancing ties in education, energy, transport, tourism, environmental protection, and so forth.
It ensures and maintains peace, security and stability in the region.
The organization jointly efforts towards the establishment of a democratic, rational, and fair new international economic and political order.

MEMBER NATIONS OF SCO

There are 8 Member Nations of SCO. These are as follows:

Member Nations

Date

Leaders

China

 26 April 1996

Xi Jinping
(President of China)

 Kazakhstan

 26 April 1996

Kassym-Jomart Tokayev
(President of Kazakhstan)

Kyrgyzstan 

 26 April 1996

Sadyr Japarov
(Acting President of Kyrgyzstan)

Russia

 26 April 1996

Vladimir Putin
(President of Russia)

Tajikistan

26 April 1996

Kokhir Rasulzoda
(Prime Minister of Tajikistan)

Uzbekistan

 15 June 2001    

Shavkat Mirziyoyev
(President of Uzbekistan)

 India 

9 June 2017    

Narendra Modi
(Prime Minister of India)

Pakistan

9 June 2017    

Imran Khan
(Prime Minister of Pakistan)

QUESTIONS (1-5)

Q.1 Which of the following countries has chaired/hosted the meeting of the 20th SCO summit?

A. Russia: ANSWER
B. Tajikistan
C. Kazakhstan
D. China

Q.2 Which of the following statements is/are incorrect in the context of the significance of the SCO summit 2020?

A. It brought President Xi Jinping of China and Mr. Modi together in the virtual format.
B. PM Modi draws the significance of infrastructure & connectivity in SCO regions.
C. PM Modi and Imran Khan had a talk contention over the issue of terrorism: ANSWER
D. None of the above

Q.3 Which of the following two are the official languages of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization?

A. French & Hindi
B. Urdu & Russian
C. French & Chinese
D. Chinese & Russian: ANSWER

Q.4 Which of the following statements is/ are correct in the context of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization?

A. It is headquartered in Moscow, Russia
B. Currently SCO has both China & USA as its member nations
C. The organisation was established in 15th June 2001: ANSWER
D. None of the above

Q.5 Which of the following countries has assumed the chairmanship of the SCO summit which is scheduled to be held in 2021-22?

A. China
B. Uzbekistan
C. Tajikistan: ANSWER
D. Kazakhstan