India attaches special importance to SCO: PM Modi

New Delhi, (UNI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said India attached special importance to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in promoting multilateral, political, security, economic and people-to-people interaction in the region.

In a brief departure statement, the Prime Minister noted that India has actively participated in various SCO dialogue mechanisms since its full membership of SCO two years ago. “We have extended full cooperation to the Chairmanship of the Kyrgyz Republic over the past year,’’ he said.

Prime Minister Modi is visiting Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic, on June 13-14to attend the meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the SCO.He is scheduled to leave for Bishkek early on Thursday.

“The Summit is expected to discuss the global security situation, multilateral economic cooperation, people-to-people exchanges and topical issues of international and regional importance. On the sidelines of the Summit, I also plan to meet several leaders bilaterally,’’ Mr Modi said.

On the invitation of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic, Mr. Modi will also be on an official bilateral visit to the Kyrgyz Republic on June 14after conclusion of the SCO Summit.

“India and the Kyrgyz Republic, bound by historical and civilizational links, share traditionally warm and friendly relations. In recent times, our relations have expanded in several areas of bilateral engagement, including defence, security, trade and investment,’’ the statement said.

Apart from  discussions on the entire range of bilateral cooperation, President Jeenbekov and Prime Minister Modi will jointly address the first meeting of India-Kyrgyz Business Forum.

Mr Modi expressed confidence that his visit to the Kyrgyz Republic will further strengthen and consolidate India’s  cooperation with the SCO member countries and with the Kyrgyz Republic.

Though Prime Minister Modi’s meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping are on the cards at Bishkek, a meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on the sidelines of the SCO summit is not scheduled.

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