India to host SCO summit


India will host the Heads of Government Council meeting of the eight-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), but Prime Minister Narendra Modi will not attend the meeting, which will be chaired by Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu instead.

India-Pakistan tensions

  • Tensions between India and Pakistan, which have played out in previous meetings, may have played a part in Mr. Khan’s decision to decline the invitation from India.
  • During the SCO meeting of the National Security Advisers, NSA Ajit Doval had walked out of the videoconference over his Pakistani counterpart’s decision to use a Pakistani map claiming Indian territories as his backdrop.
  • Significantly, tensions between India and China have not spilled over into the SCO meetings thus far, and External Affairs Minister and Defence Minister had even held bilateral meetings with their Chinese counterparts during visits to Moscow for the SCO Ministerial meetings in September.
  • Apart from the eight member states, the meeting will be attended by four observer states of the SCO. 
  • President of Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani will attend along with the First Vice-President of Iran, the Prime Minister of Belarus and the Deputy Prime Minister of Mongolia.


Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

  • The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation(SCO), or Shanghai Pact, is a Eurasian political, economic, and security alliance, the creation of which was announced on 15 June 2001 in Shanghai, China by the leaders of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan; the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Charter, formally establishing the organisation, was signed in June 2002 and entered into force on 19 September 2003.
  • The original five nations, with the exclusion of Uzbekistan, were previously members of the Shanghai Five group, founded on 26 April 1996
  • Since then, the organisation has expanded its membership to eight countries when India and Pakistan joined SCO as full members on 9 June 2017 at a summit in Astana, Kazakhstan.
  • The Heads of State Council (HSC) is the supreme decision-making body in the SCO, it meets once a year and adopts decisions and guidelines on all important matters of the organisation. 
  • Military exercises are also regularly conducted among members to promote cooperation and coordination against terrorism and other external threats, and to maintain regional peace and stability. 
  • The SCO is the largest regional organisation in the world in terms of geographical coverage  and population , covering three-fifths of the Eurasian continent  and nearly half of the human population.
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