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Shanghai Cooperation Organization accept Afghanistan as observer

Immigration News

Khaama Press
Khaama Presshttps://www.khaama.com
Khaama Press is the leading news agency of Afghanistan with over 3 million hits a month.

China, Russia and four Central Asian states granted Afghanistan observer status in their regional group Thursday, moving to consolidate ties with the impoverished, war-torn nation before most foreign combat troops depart by the end of 2014.

Chinese President Hu Jintao  announced the decision made by the SCO member states at a press conference held after the SCO Beijing summit running from Wednesday to Thursday in Beijing. China currently serves as SCO president.

Member states of the SCO will work to facilitate trade and investment, in a bid to tap economic potential within the bloc, Hu said.

Hu told the media that SCO member states have agreed to enhance cooperation in the sectors of finance,transportation, energy, telecommunications and agriculture.

In the meantime Indian External Affairs Minister S M Krishna said the most important security challenge faced by the region related to Afghanistan, which lies in the heart of Asia and is a bridge, connecting not just Central and South Asia but also Eurasia and the Middle East.

He said, “The economic development projects of the SCO can be a meaningful additional effort for Afghanistan’s reconstruction. India has already committed over 2 billion US dollars towards reconstruction and developmental activities in Afghanistan. This is a reflection of our commitment to the prosperity of the Afghan people. We will be unwavering in our support to this cause.”

Russia and China have long seen the six-nation group as a way to counter U.S. influence in Central Asia, and hope to play a significant role in Afghanistan’s future development, especially in economic reconstruction. Granting Afghanistan observer status will strengthen their contacts, something Beijing and Moscow hope will dilute U.S. influence and more closely align Kabul’s policies with their own aims.

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