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KHANTY-MANSIYSK, March 11./TASS/. The process to establish the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has been completed, its expansion coming to the forefront, the secretary general of the six-nation bloc told its tenth forum on Wednesday.
Admission of new countries "is certainly a major factor for the strengthening of CSO’s international standing," Dmitry Mezentsev said. This would give the bloc more weight "in participation in the settlement of issues on the international agenda, in its positioning in the region" he added.
"We are well aware that the enlargement process is rather lengthy, as each applicant will have to join 28 basis documents," he said, noting that SCO’s expansion was very topical and would be discussed at the forum.
A next summit of the SCO is due in the Russian city of Ufa, Bashkiria, in July.
The SCO was founded in 2001 in Shanghai by the leaders of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.