Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov backed plans for giving Afghanistan observer status in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Friday, following an SCO security meeting in Beijing.
Russia “reaffirmed support for giving Afghanistan observer status in the SCO,” the ministry said on its website.
Morgulov met with his Afghanistan counterpart Javed Ludin on the sidelines of the SCO meeting.
The two sides “discussed Russian-Afghan cooperation, prospects for the development of the domestic situation in Afghanistan, including in the context of national reconciliation and the transfer of responsibility for national security from foreign armed forces to the Afghans,” the ministry said.
The SCO member states agreed on Friday to continue assisting the Afghan people's efforts to revive the country and build an independent, peaceful and prosperous state.
The SCO, set up in 2001, includes Russia, China, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. Pakistan, India, Iran and Mongolia have observers status while Turkmenistan and Afghanistan attend SCO gatherings as guest nations.