PM Imran Khan suggests eight-pronged course of action for SCO

PM Imran Khan suggests eight-pronged course of action for SCO

Bishkek (Agencies): Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday suggested an eight-pronged course of action for the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

Addressing the 19th meeting of SCO Council of Heads of State in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, PM Imran Khan said Pakistan believes in implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action by all parties is essential for international and regional stability.

The PM said it is important to seize the opportunities for peaceful resolution of outstanding disputes and collective endeavours for regional prosperity.

He added that enduring peace and prosperity in South Asia will remain elusive until the main dynamic in South Asia is shifted from confrontation to cooperation.

Imran Khan said South Asia continues to be challenged by common enemies, including poverty, illiteracy, disease and under-development.

He said political differences and unresolved disputes further compound the predicament.

“Pakistan condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, including State-terrorism against people under illegal occupation”, Khan added.

PM Imran said Pakistan is among the few countries to have successfully turned the tide against terrorism.

He said Pakistan remains ready to share its experience and expertise in counter terrorism. We will also remain actively engaged in SCO's counter-terrorism initiatives.

Referring to the Afghan issue, PM Imran said there is finally a realization that the conflict in Afghanistan has no military solution.

He said Pakistan is fully supporting efforts for peace and reconciliation, through an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process.

Khan said we deem this to be part of a shared responsibility and, therefore, appreciate the positive contributions being made by China, Russia and Afghanistan's immediate neighbours. He said SCO's support for post-conflict Afghanistan will remain crucial.

Expressing concern over evolving situation in the Gulf and Middle East, the Prime Minister Imran Khan said Pakistan joins SCO members in urging the parties to exercise restraint, take steps to de-escalate the situation, and find solutions through diplomatic means.

He said we believe implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action by all parties is essential for international and regional stability.

Prime Minister Imran Khan suggested an eight-pronged course of action for SCO on the turf of international politics.

1 Reinforce our vision of cooperation, that rejects confrontation, and advance the imperatives of peaceful co-existence at the regional and international levels.

2. Galvanise the “Shanghai Spirit” to strengthen SCO’s core mandate of mitigating the risks of conflict, fostering confidence, and promoting stability.

3. Finalise arrangements for trade in local currencies, and set up SCO Fund and SCO Development Bank to catalyze the trans-regional development agenda.

4. Synergise the various region-wide connectivity initiatives, and work on complementing infrastructure connectivity with soft connectivity, including digital, cultural, touristic, and academic. "I propose setting up SCO Culture & Tourism Corridors, clustering multiple SCO destinations into a single package," he said.

5. Make SCO more relevant to the daily lives of citizens by promoting food security and enhancing cooperation in health and humanitarian sectors.

6. Take the lead role in establishing a comprehensive framework for combating corruption and white-collar crime.

7. Prioritise women and youth empowerment by focusing inter-alia on strengthening the Women Forum and the Youth Council and mandating them to promote gender mainstreaming, skills acquisition and jobs mobility.

8. Bridge the gap between region-specific research and policy by launching feasibilities for creating SCO Centres of Excellence on Poverty Alleviation, De-Radicalization, Connectivity, and New Technologies.

Earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan held a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the SCO meeting in Bishkek.

The two sides discussed entire gamut of bilateral relations, including China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The two sides agreed to enhance coordination to build Pakistan-China community of shared destiny in the new era, the Radio Pakistan reporteds.

The leaders of the two countries reaffirmed commitment to all weather strategic cooperative partnership of the both sides.

Prime Minister Imran Khan said CPEC remains the highest priority of the government.

Chinese President Xi Jinping acknowledged Pakistan's counter-terrorism efforts and its efforts to promote regional stability.

On Thursday, PM Khan also held an informal discussion with the Russian President Vladimir Putin in Bishkek.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Imran Khan met Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Sharipovich Jeenbekov on the sidelines of the SCO Summit.

The two leaders reviewed bilateral relations and agreed to comprehensively upgrade mutual cooperation in diverse fields.

They also agreed to enhance people-to-people contacts and boost tourism cooperation through friendly visa regimes.

Both leaders also agreed to Joint Ministerial Commission and Bilateral Political Consultations soon.

Kyrgyz President appreciated Pakistan’s role in the SCO.

PM Imran Khan congratulated Kyrgyz President on hosting SCO Summit and invited him to visit Pakistan.