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Russia seeks strong role for smaller SCO members

Posted by Kris Roman on October 30, 2008

 

putin-in-scoPrime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, comprising Russia, China, and four Central Asian states, must serve the interests of both its smaller and larger members.

Putin is currently attending a Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) heads of government meeting in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana.

“There is no question of hegemony. On the contrary, we are seeking means of guaranteeing the interests of all participants in the organization,” he told reporters.

He said each SCO member state has unique competitive advantages on international markets.

“In this sense the organization is doubly needed, as we are going through a very difficult process in international finances and the world economy,” he said.

The SCO, widely seen as a counterweight to NATO’s influence in Eurasia, comprises Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. The group primarily addresses security issues, but has recently moved to embrace economic and energy projects.

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