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BEIJING, February 10. /TASS/. The process of accession of India, Pakistan and Iran to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) can start this year, Russia’s Ambassador to China Andrey Denisov told the SCO Press Club on Tuesday.
The process will require "making political decisions," Denisov added.
"Russia welcomed the expansion of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The main candidates are our partners from India, Pakistan and Iran," the ambassador said.
New Delhi, Islamabad and Tehran currently hold the observer status in the SCO. They have already filed applications for official membership in the organization.
"Along with that, we understand that this process is rather lengthy, in accordance with the current rules of the organization. However, we hope that this year, in the framework of Russia’s presidency [in the SCO], certain political decisions at the highest level will be taken, which will launch this process," Denisov said.
The summit of SCO and BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) will take place in Ufa on July 8-10, 2015.