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SCO: India, Pakistan membership to be finalised in 2016

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Leaders present at the SCO summit in Yekaterinburg, Russia in 2009
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Moscow: The membership of India and Pakistan in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) would be finalised by the next meeting of the leaders in 2016 in India, Russian presidential aide Yuri Ushakov said on Tuesday.

“India and Pakistan are not joining the SCO tomorrow (on Wednesday). The process of engaging them is beginning,” TASS news agency quoted Ushakov as saying in an interview to Rossiya 24 TV channel.

The process of the two countries’ accession to the political, military and economic alliance, which consists of Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, kicks off on Friday at the summit in Ufa in Russia.

Leaders present at the SCO summit in Yekaterinburg, Russia in 2009
Leaders present at the SCO summit in Yekaterinburg, Russia in 2009

Ushakov added that inclusion of India and Pakistan in the SCO demands the coordination of a working memorandum. Both the countries also need to sign 28 key documents of the group.

“After that, as we hope, the membership of these two countries in the SCO will be finalised and we will be able to talk about our Group of Eight participants,” Ushakov said.

Meanwhile, media reports said Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi could meet Pakistani Premier Nawaz Sharif on the sidelines of the SCO summit on Friday.

(IANS)

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President Ram Nath Kovind Pays His Condolences to Former UN Chief Kofi Annan

Annan was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize jointly with the UN in 2001 "for their work for a better organised and more peaceful world".

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India condoles former UN chief Kofi Annan's death.
India condoles former UN chief Kofi Annan's death. Flickr

India on Saturday condoled the death of former UN Secretary General and Nobel laureate Kofi Annan with President Ram Nath Kovind expressing his condolences to the former Ghanaian diplomat’s family and the UN community as a whole.

“Sorry to learn of the passing of former Secretary General of the United Nations Kofi Annan,” Kovind said on the Rashtrapati Bhavan Twitter handle.

“My condolences to his family and to the UN community,” he stated.

Annan, 80, died on Saturday in Switzerland after a short illness, with his wife and three children by his side.

“It is with immense sadness that the Annan family and the Kofi Annan Foundation announce that the former Secretary General of the UN and Nobel Peace Laureate, passed away peacefully on Saturday 18th August after a short illness,” his family said.

Kofi Annan
Annan was the first black African to take up the role of the world’s top diplomat, serving two terms from 1997 to 2006. Flickr

Annan was the first black African to take up the role of the world’s top diplomat, serving two terms from 1997 to 2006. He later served as the UN special envoy for Syria, leading efforts to find a peaceful solution to the conflict.

He also led a UN commission to investigate the Rohingya refugee crisis in Myanmar.

The Myanmar government led by Aung San Suu Kyi supported Annan’s recommendations on the crisis in the country’s Rakhine State.

Also Read: New AI Model to Identify the Risk of Heart Disease in Indians

Annan was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize jointly with the UN in 2001 “for their work for a better organised and more peaceful world”.

His tenure as the UN chief coincided with the Iraq war and the HIV/Aids pandemic. (IANS)

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