Business Standard

Rajnath to hold bilateral meet with Chinese counterpart on SCO sidelines

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) pursues a policy based on the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity of nations, the defence ministry said on Tuesday

Rajnath Singh

Rajnath Singh

Press Trust of India New Delhi

Listen to This Article

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) pursues a policy based on the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity of nations, the defence ministry said on Tuesday ahead of hosting a key meeting of the grouping on Friday.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is likely to hold bilateral talks with his Chinese counterpart Li Shangfu on the sidelines of the SCO defence ministerial conclave in Delhi, people familiar with the matter said.
The bilateral talks between Singh and Li are taking place days after the Indian and Chinese armies held 18th round of military talks on ending the three-year border row in eastern Ladakh.
Li, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu and their counterparts from other member countries of the SCO, except Pakistan's Khawaja Asif, are set to attend the defence ministerial meeting being hosted by India under its presidency of the influential grouping.
In a statement, the defence ministry said counter-terror cooperation and matters concerning regional peace and security will figure prominently at the SCO defence ministerial conclave.
It said the theme of India's presidency of the grouping in 2023 is 'Secure SCO'.
The ministry said Singh will hold bilateral meetings with the visiting defence ministers on the sidelines of the SCO meet.
The SCO meeting will be chaired by Singh.
"The defence ministers will discuss amongst other issues concerning regional peace and security, counter terrorism efforts within SCO and an effective multilateralism," the ministry said.
It said India attaches special importance to SCO in promoting multilateral, political, security, economic and people-to-people interactions in the region.
"The SCO pursues its policy based on the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity of nations, non-interference in internal affairs, equality of all member states and mutual understanding and respect for opinions of each of them," it added.
The SCO defence ministers' meeting is also expected to deliberate on the situation in Afghanistan.
The ministry said the ongoing engagement with SCO has helped India promote its relations with the countries in the region with which New Delhi shared civilisational linkages, and is considered its extended neighbourhood.
The SCO member countries are Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, India, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Apart from the member states, two observer countries Belarus and Iran will also be participating in the SCO defence ministers meeting.
People familiar with the matter said the Pakistan defence minister may attend the meeting through video conferencing.
The SCO was founded at a summit in Shanghai in 2001 by the presidents of Russia, China, the Kyrgyz Republic, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
Over the years, it has emerged as one of the largest trans-regional international organisations. India and Pakistan became its permanent members in 2017.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Don't miss the most important news and views of the day. Get them on our Telegram channel

First Published: Apr 26 2023 | 8:21 AM IST

Explore News