Thursday, June 22, 2017

ANALYSIS: As ‘Shanghai Spirit’ sweeps Central Asia, is the Middle East noticing?

A group photo following a meeting of heads of member states at the SCO summit in Astana, Kazakhstan, on June 9, 2017. (Reuters)

By Ehtesham Shahid

AL-ARABIYA - Thursday, 22 June 2017

Addressing the 17th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit in Astana earlier this month, Chinese President Xi Jinping said something that goes into the core of the organization’s stated objectives.
“Firmly committed to the Shanghai Spirit, SCO member states are making solid progress on the road of building a community of shared future, thus establishing a fine example of the new type of international relations featuring win-win cooperation”, he said.
Considering what has been going on with the NATOs, EU and the GCCs of this world, this “new type of international relations” looks destined for greater accomplishments.
Jinping also made a much-anticipated announcement during the summit. “Today we are going to admit India and Pakistan as new member states of the SCO,” he said. This inclusion means that the SCO now encompasses nearly half of the world population and a combined GDP that, according to one estimate, is over 25 percent of global GDP.