#AstanaMeet: Terrorism is a major threat to humanity: Modi

With the inclusion of Pakistan and India, the SCO will have a total of eight states as permanent members - after China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The two leaders met in Astana, on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit.

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev in his inaugural speech during the 17th SCO summit welcomed Pakistan as full member of the organization. Iran's formal membership of the SCO will also be on the agenda of the summit.

We must continue the good tradition of solidarity and coordination, he stated. India and Pakistan were admitted to the SCO group as observers in 2005 and began the administrative process of joining the organisation in 2015.

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The Prime Minister further said that India appreciates China's support for its accession to the SCO and wishes to strengthen cooperation with China under the SCO framework.

After the SCO membership, Pakistan will be capable of getting regional cooperation to end terrorism an extremism. The meeting between the two leaders is seen as an effort to mend the growing fissures between the countries over various issues, including the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Both leaders also discussed the importance of enhancing connectivity.

PM Modi said the SCO will help in bringing peace in war-torn Afghanistan, adding the bloc must also work to fight climate change.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif exchanged pleasantries at the cultural gala here, amid frosty bilateral ties, deadlocked talks and escalation of hostilities along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir.

India and Pakistan today joined the SCO, the first-ever expansion of the China-dominated security grouping that is increasingly seen as a counterweight to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

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