Sushma Swaraj Arrives In Russia To Attend Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Summit

Sushma Swaraj Arrives In Russia To Attend Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Summit


SOCHI:  External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj today arrived in the Russian city of Sochi to attend the annual Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit.

The summit will be held on November 30 and December 1 and issues relating to the regional security scenario, including situations in the Gulf and Afghanistan are likely to be discussed. In June, India and Pakistan had become full-fledged members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a China-dominated security grouping increasingly seen as a counterweight to NATO.

"EAM @SushmaSwaraj arrives in the picturesque town of #Sochi to attend the SCO Council Heads of Government Meeting on 30 November & 1 December. #EAMatSCO," External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted.

Sushma Swaraj was received by the mayor of Sochi, Anatoly Pakhomov, and the Indian ambassador to Russia, Pankaj Saran.

In the summit, India is likely to press for concerted regional and global efforts to contain terrorism.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had attended the SCO summit in June in Astana, the capital city of Kazakhstan.

Last week, Mr Kumar had said Sushma Swaraj will have bilateral meetings with several leaders on the sidelines of the summit.

Asked whether she will have bilateral meetings with the Pakistan Foreign Minister or call on Chinese premier Li Keqiang, Mr Kumar had said her schedule was still being finalised.

"At this stage we cannot say anything," he had said.

Ms Swaraj will return on December 2.

As an SCO member, India is expected to have a bigger say in pressing for concerted action in dealing with terrorism as well as on issues relating to security and defence in the region.

India's membership was strongly pushed by Russia while Pakistan's entry into the grouping was backed by China.

India had been an observer at the SCO since 2005. It has generally participated in the ministerial-level meetings of the grouping which focus mainly on security and economic cooperation in the Eurasian region.

The SCO had set the ball rolling to make India a member of the bloc during its summit in Ufa, Russia, in July 2015.

Source: (