Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday asserted that terrorism remains a major threat to regional and global peace and called upon the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) countries to take decisive action for countering its challenges.
“Terrorism may be in any form, in any manifestation, we have to fight together against it” The Prime Minister said while addressing the 23rd Summit of the SCO Council of Heads virtually on Tuesday.
Attacking indirectly to Pakistan, Mr Modi said “some countries use cross-border terrorism as a policy instrument and shelter terrorists and the SCO should condemn such countries”.
“There should be no double standards on terrorism” Modi added.
Raising concerns over the Afghanistan situation he said India’s concerns and expectations regarding Afghanistan are similar to those of most SCO countries.
“The land of Afghanistan is not used to spread instability in neighboring countries or encourage extremist ideologies” he added.
The Prime Minister said, ‘The people of India and Afghanistan enjoy age-old friendly relations and in the last two decades, we have contributed to the economic and social development of Afghanistan,’ adding, ‘Even after the events of 2021, we have been sending humanitarian aid”.
Taking the importance and role of SCO countries, the Prime Minister said the food, fuel and fertiliser crisis are a big challenge for all countries in the world surrounded by controversies, tensions, epidemics.
He added that over the past two decades, the SCO has emerged as an important platform for peace, prosperity and development in the entire Eurasia region.
“India has made sustained efforts to take SCO’s multifaceted cooperation to new heights as the chair of SCO, adding that India has made five new pillars for cooperation in the SCO and they are Startups and Innovation, Traditional Medicine, Youth Empowerment, Digital Inclusion and Shared Buddhist Heritage,” Prime Minister underlined.
The Prime Minister said, several new platforms including Young Scientist Conclave, Authors Conclave, Startup Forum, and Youth Council have been organized to harness the talent of the youth from SCO countries.
“These platforms aim to channel the potential of SCO’s youth and provide them with meaningful opportunities and India supports proposals for reform and modernisation of SCO,” he added.
The 23rd Summit of the SCO Council of Heads of State is being chaired by Prime Minister Modi. All the SCO Member States China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan have been invited to attend the Summit. Iran, Belarus, and Mongolia have been invited as Observer States.
As per SCO tradition, Turkmenistan has also been invited as the guest of the Chair. India assumed the rotating Chairmanship of SCO at the Samarkand Summit in September last year.
India set up new pillars of cooperation under its Chairmanship by emphasizing startups and innovation, traditional medicine, digital inclusion, youth empowerment, and shared Buddhist heritage.
India emphasized on building greater people-to-people connect to further the Prime Minister’s vision of Vasudhaiv Kutumbakom. India has hosted a total of 134 meetings and events, including 14 Ministerial-level meetings.