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MOSCOW, May 5 (Itar-Tass) —— Ministers of Foreign Affairs from member countries of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) will meet on May 11 in Beijing to discuss preparations for a meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State, the Russian Foreign Ministry reported on Saturday.
“In the focus of attention there will be issues of the preparation for a meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization due to be held in the Chinese capital on June 6 through June 7, 2012,” the ministry said. “The ministers will consider draft documents and decisions to be discussed at the Beijing summit.”
“These documents will include a draft Declaration of the SCO member states. It gives an assessment of global processes and reflects the positions of the member countries on pressing international and regional problems,” the ministry said.
“The ministers will consider draft basic guidelines for SCO development strategy in the medium-term perspective,” the ministry went on. “The document focuses on determining parameters and modalities of the organization’s further development. When approved, the document will make it possible to begin elaboration of a fundamental long-term program of activities of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.”
The SCO foreign ministers will also discuss a new version of the regulations on political and diplomatic measures and mechanisms of the organization’s response to situations threatening peace, security and stability in the region, which were approved at a SCO summit in Yekaterinburg in June 2009. “The tuned document will make it possible to expand the range of crisis settlement tools. It provides for a number of additional measures, such as the exchange of operational information, provision of special hardware and tools, mutual assistance in evacuation of people, offering financial, economic and humanitarian aid,” the Russian foreign ministry stressed.
“It is planned to approve a draft cooperation program between SCO member states in anti-terrorism, anti-separatism, and anti-extremism fight for 2013-2015,” the ministry noted. “The document envisages a range of measures geared to eliminate terrorist organizations, to prevent illegal trafficking of arms, munitions, and explosive substances, to prevent violence, to coordinate cooperation between border services, and to continue the practice of anti-terrorism exercises in SCO member countries.”
“The foreign ministers will exchange views on key problems of the international and regional agenda,” the ministry said. “Special emphasis will be placed on counteracting threats and challenges facing the SCO member countries, the situation in Afghanistan, around Iran, in the Middle East, including in Syria.”
The Shanghai Cooperation Organization was founded in 2011 by the leaders of Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. Iran, India, Mongolia, and Pakistan enjoy the observer status. Representatives from Afghanistan and Turkmenistan take part in SCO meetings as guests. Belarus and Sri Lanka have the partner status. In 2011, Afghanistan applied for a full-fledged membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.