S Jaishankar to lead India at SCO Summit in Kazakhstan with PM’s ‘Secure’ vision

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India has officially announced its participation in the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Kazakhstan’s Astana this week.”At the Summit, the leaders are expected to review the organisation’s activities over the past two decades and discuss the state and prospects of multilateral cooperation. Topical issues of regional and international importance are also expected to be discussed at the meeting,” External Affairs Ministry’s statement read. It further stated that India’s priorities in this year’s summit are shaped by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of a “secure” SCO.

“SECURE stands for Security, Economic cooperation, Connectivity, Unity, Respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, and Environmental protection,” the statement read.

In its first-ever presidency of the SCO, India last year hosted the 23rd meeting of the SCO Council of Heads on July 4 in virtual format.

PM Modi has decided to skip the SCO this year as he is set to visit Russia from July 8 to 9 on his first trip to the country in nearly five years. After the conclusion of his trip, the Prime Minister is likely to travel to Austria on July 9 on a two-day trip.

The SCO, consisting of India, China, Russia, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan is an influential economic and security bloc that has emerged as one of the largest transregional international organisations.

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