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Shanghai Cooperation Organization To Hold Heads of Government Summit in Sochi Nov. 30

Nov. 28, 2017 (EIRNS)—The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) heads of government summit will be held in Sochi, Russia from Nov. 30 to Dec. 1, and will include both Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and China’s Premier Li Keqiang. Vladimir Putin is also expected to be involved as the President of the host country.

There are currently eight full members of the SCO: Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, and India. The last two obtained full membership in June 2017, so this will be their first full meeting. The Indian government announced that External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will represent the country, and that her schedule will include bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the SCO summit, and a reception hosted by Russian Prime Minister Medvedev, according to the Times of India. Pakistan has not yet announced whom they are sending.

The SCO, although founded as an organization focused on security concerns in the region, has increasingly taken up issues of economic development as well. It is a forum in which the question of India’s participation in China’s Belt and Road Initiative—which they have thus far refused to join—might be productively discussed.