Pakistan, Indian flags hoisted at SCO Headquarters

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BEIJING, June 15 (APP): The national flags of newly admitted Shanghai
Cooperation Organization (SCO) States Pakistan and India – were raised at the SCO Headquarters here on Thursday.
Secretary General, SCO, Rashid Alimov, Pakistan Ambassador to China,
Khalid Masood, Indian Ambassador to China, Vijay Gokhale, ambassadors of the Observer States, representative of Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, senior diplomats and officials were present.
In his welcome address, the SCO Secretary General said, this day 16 years
ago, at the crossroads of two millennia, the SCO appeared on the political map of the world.
He said, neighborliness and unity of development goals these simple and
clear principles of interstate relations enshrined in the Charter have become the fundamental foundation of a new type of Organization and have transformed the SCO into a real factor of international life.
Rashid Alimov said, in Astana, Kazakhstan, the leaders of the founding
states of the SCO made a historic decision to accept Pakistan and India as full-fledged members of the Organization.
“Today, on the Day of the SCO, we gathered at the headquarters of the
Organization for the solemn ceremony of raising the national flags of Pakistan and India”, he added.
He said from now on, the state flags of the eight-member states of the
Organization, united by the “Shanghai spirit”, will be fluttering around the emerald-blue flag of the SCO.
Rashid Alimov said, the SCO has the right to be proud of its achievements,
but no country or organization can solve the acute problems of our time alone. When the world continues to face new challenges and threats, the SCO stands firmly for uniting efforts against all forces of evil, for peace and stability, development and prosperity.
“On the way to building a better and brighter future for each and
everyone the Charter of the SCO and the Charter of the United Nations will serve as our guiding star,” he added.
Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador Masood Khalid said, today’s
flag-raising ceremony symbolizes the start of a new journey for Pakistan.
This is a moment of fulfillment, of accomplishment, and of success, he
said, adding, “It will remind us in future that it was on this day that we had pledged together to work for a shared vision of common development.”
He said, with SCO members, we share deep historical and cultural ties, as
well as strong economic linkages.
The Ambassador pledged to uphold the Shanghai Spirit and the SCO Charter,
promote regional peace and stability and further develop people to people contacts and cultural interaction.
“We will leave no stone unturned in the attainment of greater good of
our people through cooperation and understanding as SCO family,” he added.
Expressing special thanks to the founding six countries for having
afforded to Pakistan their support in attaining SCO’s membership, he thanked the SCO Secretary General and his team for their assistance and support that they extended during the membership process.
He also expressed gratitude for people and government of Kazakhstan for
hosting the historic summit in Astana.
In his remarks, the Indian Ambassador termed the full membership of India
to SCO at Astana a historic moment and said, “We look forward to developing the relations with all the member countries for the mutual benefit of whole region.”
He said his country is ready to share its expertise in various fields
including science and technology for the shared prosperity of the region.
Besides playing national anthems of Pakistan and India, the SCO
Secretary General, the chief guest from Chinese side and Ambassadors of Pakistan and India also hit together the “Shanghai Spirit” drum.