The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Defence Ministers conference began on Friday in New Delhi, presided over by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.In his opening remarks, he emphasised the SCO states’ cultural and civilizational links. “There are cultural and civilizational ties between us.” For centuries, we have had people-to-people connections and exchanges in the fields of commodities and ideas, as a result of which we have grown economically and culturally. We shall seek to reinforce those ties as the times change. “SCO has grown into a powerful regional organisation,” he remarked.
Defence Ministers from the SCO also posed for a photo together in Delhi. General Li Shangfu of China and Sergei Shoigu of Russia both spoke at the SCO Defence Ministers’ Meeting in Delhi.
Meanwhile, in the most recent development, Pakistan is participating in the SCO Defence Ministers’ Meeting virtually. It had previously chosen to skip the conclave.Chinese Defence Minister Li Shangfu, Tajikistan’s Colonel General Sherali Mirzo, Iran’s Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Gharaei Ashtiyani, and Kazakhstan’s Colonel General Ruslan Zhaksylykov arrived in the city on Thursday, a day before the SCO Defence Ministers’ conference.
The meeting is also attended by Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu and his equivalents from Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan.
According to those participating in the meeting’s preparations, the meeting’s main focus will be regional security situations, including events in Afghanistan. They also stated that improving collaboration among SCO member nations to effectively tackle terrorism and extremism will be a priority. India, as Chair of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in 2023, will host the SCO Defence Ministers’ Meeting in New Delhi on April 28, 2023.
SCO is a non-governmental organisation founded in 2001. Along with India, the SCO membership comprises Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
In addition to the member countries, two observer countries, Belarus and Iran, will attend the SCO Defence Ministers Meeting.
In 2017, India and Pakistan were admitted as permanent members.