Backgrounder: A brief history of SCO summits

Source:Xinhua Published: 2014-9-12 17:40:26

Heads of state of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) members are to wrap up their two-day 14th summit in the Tajik capital of Dushanbe on Friday after discussing regional security, economic cooperation and other world and regional issues of common concern.

The leaders will sign the Dushanbe Declaration, approve a series of documents on SCO expansion, and pass a resolution on the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.

An agreement on the facilitation of international road transport among SCO member states is also to be signed.

Over the last 13 years, the SCO has become a strategic pillar for the region to safeguard security and develop economy as a whole, yielding fruitful results in various aspects.

The following is a brief history of the SCO summits.

June 14-15, 2001 -- Presidents of the member states of the "Shanghai Five" -- China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan -- met for their sixth summit in Shanghai and announced Uzbekistan's accession into the organization.

The six heads of states held the first SCO summit on June 15, 2001 in Shanghai and signed the Declaration of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, officially inaugurating the SCO.

June 7, 2002 -- The second SCO summit opened in Russia's second largest city of St. Petersburg. The leaders of the six countries signed the Charter of the SCO to define the organization's development goals and institutionalize cooperation among member states.

May 29, 2003 -- The leaders of the six SCO member states held their third summit in Moscow to discuss ways of meeting challenges and strengthening cooperation.

At the summit, the leaders reached consensus on the institutionalization of the SCO and on some major international issues.

The summit also approved the appointment of then Chinese Ambassador to Russia Zhang Deguang as the SCO's first secretary-general.

June 17, 2004 -- The fourth summit meeting of the SCO took place in the Uzbek capital city of Tashkent.

During the summit, the presidents of the six SCO member states -- China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan -- formally launched the Regional Anti-terrorist Structure of the SCO, and pledged in a joint declaration to cooperate in fighting terrorism and coping with new security threats and in strengthening their economic and trade ties.

During the summit, Mongolia was granted SCO observer status.

July 5, 2005 -- The leaders of the SCO held their fifth summit in Astana, capital of Kazakhstan, to discuss measures to strengthen unity and further cooperation in economy, security and humanistic affairs.

Then Chinese President Hu Jintao delivered an important speech at the summit.

The leaders agreed to grant SCO observer status to India, Iran and Pakistan. At the end of the summit, the heads of state issued a declaration on strengthening cooperation within the organization.

June 15, 2006 -- The sixth SCO summit opened in Shanghai. During the summit, the six heads of state proposed a long-term plan for the SCO development. They also issued a joint declaration on the fifth anniversary of the SCO, charting the course and identifying major tasks for the next-stage development of the organization.

Aug. 16, 2007 -- The seventh SCO summit concluded in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek after issuing a joint communique. During the summit, the leaders agreed on further developing all-round cooperation within the framework of the SCO and exchanged in an in-depth way views on the current regional and international issues, the communique said.

Aug. 28, 2008 -- Leaders of the SCO member states gathered in Dushanbe for their eighth annual summit, with the focus on security, economic and cultural cooperation within the bloc.

Following the one-day summit, the leaders inked a declaration and issued a joint communique. They also witnessed the signing of several documents, including one on joint anti-terror drills, one on crackdown on the smuggling of arms, ammunition and explosives, and a memorandum on bank cooperation.

June 16, 2009 -- The ninth SCO summit concluded in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg, with calls for constructive dialogues and enhanced cooperation to tackle regional and international issues.

At the summit, leaders of the SCO member states exchanged in an in-depth way views on a wide range of issues such as the global financial crisis and regional security.

It was the first time that leaders from observer states -- Mongolia, India, Pakistan and Iran -- were included in a restricted meeting of the SCO Heads of State Council.

June 11, 2010 -- The 10th SCO summit ended in Tashkent with a declaration pledging to build an effective and open multilateral organization dedicated to regional peace, stability and prosperity.

SCO member states also called for restoring stability in the turmoil-hit Kyrgyzstan through dialogue. The SCO also reiterated its support for efforts of the United Nations to play a leading role in international mediation on Afghanistan.

June 15, 2011 -- The SCO celebrated its tenth anniversary in Astana, with a communique pledging enhanced regional security and economic and cultural cooperation.

The leaders pointed out that the SCO, weathering 10 years of major international and regional changes, had become an important mechanism in deepening good-neighborly partnership between member states, according to the communique.

The summit approved the 2011-2016 drug control strategy of the SCO member states and its implementation plan, which would be conducive to enhancing the capabilities of member states in jointly dealing with drug threats in the region, the communique said.

June 7, 2012 -- The 12th SCO summit held in Beijing took on the historic task of mapping out a new blueprint for the increasingly important global players, as the year 2012 marks the beginning of the second decade for the development of the SCO.

The summit further identified the direction of the SCO's development and major tasks for the next decade and adopted the Strategic Plan for the Medium-Term Development of the SCO.

The SCO member states also called for the establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in central Asia in a declaration released after the conclusion of the Beijing summit.

Sept. 13, 2013 -- At the 13th meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State held in Bishkek, Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a speech expounding China's policies.

At the summit, the SCO leaders conducted in-depth exchanges of views and reached broad consensus on issues such as good-neighborly relations as well as key global and regional affairs.

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