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​​​Swaraj attends SCO meet, Pak Foreign Minister also present

Dushanbe (Tajikishtan): External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Friday attended the Council of Heads of Government meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Dushanbe, in the presence of a number of leaders.

Sushma Swaraj attends SCO meet in Dushanbe

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi was also present at the meeting.

Addressing the gathering, Swaraj said that terrorism remains the most pertinent threat to goals of development and prosperity.

"As the footprint of terrorism expands, governments must assume their national responsibility and cooperate with each other. India has actively supported the SCO Qingdao Summit Leaders' Appeal to Youth against the radicalisation of youth," she said.

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Furthermore, Swaraj, while welcoming the signing of the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group protocol on the sidelines of the Qingdao Summit, said India would be happy to co-host the next meeting of the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group with Afghanistan.

"India stands committed to a peace process which is Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled, that can help Afghanistan emerge as peaceful, secure, stable, inclusive and economically vibrant nation. In this context, we welcome the signing of the Protocol of the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group on the sidelines of the Qingdao Summit. We would be happy to co-host with Afghanistan, the next meeting of the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group, in India," she said.

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Talking about India's initiative aimed at ensuring a better environment, Swaraj said, "We are determined to work together in SCO on environmentally friendly energy alternatives to ensure sustainable development. I am happy to inform that United Nations has awarded its highest environmental honour - 'Champions of the Earth' award recently to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President of France for the initiative of International Solar Alliance. India has also pledged to eliminate single-use plastics by 2022."

She also said that India would host the SCO exhibition as announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. "To honour and deepen our cultural connect, the Indian Prime Minister had announced at the SCO Summit this year, that India would host the SCO exhibition on 'Shared Buddhist Heritage'. We would be doing so next year," she said.



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