International

SCO calls for inclusive govt in Afghanistan

Dushanbe, Sept 17 (UNI): The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation on Friday said it is critical to have an inclusive government in Afghanistan, with representation from all ethnic, religious and political groups of Afghan society.

The Dushanbe Declaration, adopted after the SCO Summit in the Tajikistan capital on Friday, also expressed its support for Afghanistan as an “independent, neutral, united, democratic and peaceful State, free of terrorism, war and drugs”.

It called for the earliest possible stabilisation of the situation in Afghanistan.

“The member states believe that one of the most important factors in maintaining and strengthening security and stability in the SCO space is the earliest possible settlement of the situation in Afghanistan. They support the formation of Afghanistan as an independent, neutral, united, democratic and peaceful state, free from terrorism, war and drugs,” the declaration read.

On Afghan refugees, the SCO member states said it is important for the international community to make active efforts to facilitate the dignified, safe and sustainable return to their homeland.

The member States also strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.

The member states reaffirmed the need to step up joint efforts to prevent terrorism and its financing, including by implementing existing global standards on combating money-laundering and the financing of terrorism and by suppressing the spread of terrorist, separatist and extremist ideologies that feed it, the declaration said.

“Member States are convinced that an important focus of the global counter- terrorism struggle should be to deprive terrorism of its social foundations, including eliminating poverty, unemployment and illiteracy.

“The member states will step up their efforts to prevent the preparation and financing of acts of terrorism in their territories and deny terrorists safe havens, enhance cooperation to identify, prevent and suppress the activities of organizations and individuals involved in terrorism, separatism and extremism,” it said.

On economic cooperation, the member states emphasised the importance of sharing experiences on the design and implementation of national development strategies, digital economy plans and the adoption of innovative technologies, including to jointly bridge the technological and digital divide.

On Energy Cooperation, the member states stressed the need to increase mutually beneficial cooperation in the energy sector, including the wide use of renewable and alternative energy sources, and support the application of various cost-effective and environmentally friendly technologies that reduce negative environmental impact and promote energy security and the transition to cleaner and greener energy sources in an energy-efficient economy.

On tourism, the declaration said Member States stand for further promotion of the rich, cultural and historical heritage of peoples and unlocking of tourist potential of cities and regions of the SCO countries, creation of additional mechanisms for development of interaction in the sphere of culture and tourism, including through introduction of the practice of announcement of a SCO tourism and cultural capital every year.

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