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Iran Becomes New Permanent Member of Shanghai Cooperation Organization

Iranian President Raisi attends SCO virtual meeting/Photo/Iranian Presidency. ( Credit: Iranian Presidency/Handout )

Iran was given full membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) following Tuesday’s 23rd meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of States.

Tehran joined the regional alliance as its ninth member.

The Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, congratulated Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and the people of Iran on the occasion of the country becoming a full member of the organization.

“I extend my congratulations to President Raisi and the people of Iran on this occasion. We also welcome signing the Memorandum of Obligation for Belarus’ SCO membership,” he said.

“The interest of other countries in joining SCO today is a testament to the importance of this organization,” he said.

Meanwhile, the New Delhi Declaration issued Tuesday evening said, “The member states stressed the historical significance of the admission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the SCO as a full Member State.”

The SCO members also noted the “importance” of signing the memorandum of obligations by Belarus to “achieve the status of an SCO member state.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin asked the SCO to grant Belarus full membership in his speech at the conference, according to Anadolu.

Also, at this year’s meeting, Kazakhstan will take over as chair of the eight-nation group from India.

During the conference on Tuesday, where Belarus and Mongolia were invited as observer states, Iran became a full member with China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, India, and Uzbekistan.

The SCO members pledged to continue their efforts to support the Afghan people in light of the changing humanitarian situation. They stated that they believe it is “essential to establish an inclusive government” in Afghanistan that includes members of all ethnic, religious, and political groups in Afghan society.