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Home >> World
UPDATED: 20:47, June 08, 2006
Kazakh president praises SCO as open, nonaligned organization
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The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has always been an open organization oriented to comprehensive international cooperation, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said in a recent interview with Chinese media.

Nazarbayev, who is due to attend an SCO summit scheduled for June 15 in Shanghai, said the SCO, as a powerful and promising organization, had established its status among the international community in recent years.

"The SCO is neither a military bloc nor an exclusive alliance targeting third party," he said.

On the organization's achievements, Nazarbayev said SCO members had formed a broad security zone in their border areas, which was important to the peaceful development and prosperity in the region, as well as its own development.

Past SCO summits and routine meetings had laid a solid legal foundation for realizing the goal of the organization, he said.

The president added that as two standing institutes of the SCO, the secretariat and the executive committee of its regional anti-terror body had already been set up and played an important role in realizing its set goals.

Currently, he said, the SCO was facing two strategic tasks -- safeguarding security in the region, and developing cooperation in economy, trade and investment.

"I believe, for the SCO, its principal task is still the fight against terrorism, separatism, extremism, drug-trafficking and illegal immigration," Nazarbayev said.

"In the meantime, we should pay attention to the development of trade and economic cooperation," he added, noting that SCO member countries had approved a compendium on multilateral cooperation, including more than 100 projects in the fields of economy, science and technology.

Nazarbayev said SCO members should broaden their cooperation in such fields as education, culture, tourism and sports within the framework of the organization.

When asked about measures taken by Kazakhstan to boost the SCO's development, he said his country attached great importance to the organization, and saw their cooperation as one of the priorities of Kazakhstan's foreign policy.

The proposal for the establishment of the SCO was made by China, one of the largest countries in the world and a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council, Nazarbayev stressed.

On economic cooperation, he said, Kazakhstan was making efforts to launch bilateral and multilateral projects in the fields of trade and economy, investment, energy, transportation and culture.

"Our country is willing to actively participate in the SCO's economic projects, including investments for those projects based on mutual benefit," said the president.

As for the SCO's prospects and the upcoming summit, he said the organization, as a new system of regional cooperation, would become part of the global security system and the concept of realizing a multi-polar world.

Nazarbayev said that considering the member countries' increasing potential in trade and economic cooperation, the SCO was most likely to become a global center of economic development.

"I hope the upcoming summit in Shanghai will inject new momentum into the efforts made by countries in the region to strengthen their coordination in jointly fighting against terrorism, separatism and extremism," he said.

The summit will review the developments of the SCO since it was established five years ago, analyze international and regional situations, study the organization's future development, and outline cooperation plans, Nazarbayev said.

Established in 2001, the SCO comprises China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. In 2004 and 2005, it accepted Mongolia, Iran, Pakistan and India as observers.

The heads of state of the six SCO member countries will attend the summit meeting, along with observers and representatives from countries and international organizations that have established cooperative relations with the SCO.

Source: Xinhua

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