Anti-Terror Meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Begins in Delhi
On Sunday, a four-day meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization’s Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) began in India’s national capital. This article will discuss the importance of deepening security cooperation with the SCO and India’s interest in this. In addition, we will discuss the situation in Afghanistan under the Taliban regime and India’s interest in a deeper SCO-India security relationship.
SCO’s Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) council meeting in Delhi
During the SCO RATS council meeting in Delhi, Ruslan Mirzaev, the SCO RATS executive committee director, held discussions with Indian leaders. He also held talks with NSA Ajit Doval, Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakshi Lekhi, and the head of the BSF. Both organizations have been collaborating on counterterrorism efforts for over a decade.
The meeting brought together anti-terror experts from India and Pakistan and representatives from other SCO member states. They discussed regional security challenges and developments in Afghanistan, with a significant focus on the threat posed by the Taliban. The meeting was hosted by India, which assumed the chairmanship of the SCO’s RATS executive council on 28 October. The RTS SCO will meet annually, with India serving as the chairman for one year.
On Saturday, the three-member Pakistani delegation arrived in India and will stay in India until May 20. The meeting will also discuss counter-terror measures under the SCO’s Regional Anti-Terror Structure (RATS).
During the meeting, the Taliban’s foreign ministry head, banned by the Russian Federation, called for stronger cooperation between Central Asia and Afghanistan and proposed holding a conference on security issues in Kabul. The meeting also saw a joint working plan between the SCO RATS and INTERPOL to fight terrorism. At the SCO’s Regional Anti-Terror Structure (RATS) council meeting in Delhi, India urged the countries to re-establish a democratic government in Kabul.
At the meeting, Ruslan Mirzaev, Director of the SCO RATS, met with national security officials from Kazakhstan, including the Secretary of the Security Council and Minister of Interior and Foreign Affairs. He expressed his support for the vision of the SCO RATS’ executive committee and assured all-around asset to the council. During the meeting, the participants agreed on a draft report submitted to the SCO’s Council of Heads of State. They also discussed the implementation of SCO RATS decisions and the financing of the executive committee.
During the meeting, special attention was given to the state of affairs in Afghanistan. The SCO’s position in favor of an inclusive government for Afghanistan’s ethnic minorities was reiterated. The SCO’s representatives stressed that restoring economic development is essential to maintain stability in the region. Russia has also banned Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami and its affiliate organization. Meanwhile, the Public Relations Center of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) has reported eliminating an undercover cell.
India’s interest in deepening security cooperation with SCO
The SCO’s Anti-Terrorism Meeting begins today in Delhi, as the regional economic bloc expands its mandate to include India. The plan consists of terrorism, cyber security, organized crime, and transportation. India and Pakistan are critical players in the region, and their inclusion in the SCO would provide Islamabad with a platform for countering each other. Russia reluctantly agreed to admit India and Pakistan to the SCO because of the high propensity of each to bring interstate or cross-border issues into the organization. It feared this would distract from the SCO’s agenda.
Russia has pledged to tackle this issue jointly with Pakistan under the SCO’s mandate. The SCO’s Deputy Foreign Ministers also met in Moscow last week to discuss the situation in Afghanistan. They reaffirmed the group’s support for a legitimate, inclusive government in Afghanistan. India has expressed interest in deepening security cooperation with the SCO, as well as with its allies.
In addition to participating in the SCO Anti-Terrorist Meeting, Ruslan Mirzaev, director of the SCO RATS, also attended a unique high-level event on the sidelines of the 65th session of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs. The two sides exchanged views on their current and future interactions in the anti-terrorist arena. Both sides affirmed the importance of cooperation within UN commissions.
A positive role for India in the Afghan conflict could be a welcome change in regional politics. The international consensus that emerged is vital in this process. Russia’s participation in the SCO and Islamabad’s active participation will also help to ease misunderstandings and assure a changed policy. However, it will be a long process until the meeting concludes.
Ruslan Mirzaev, director of the SCO RATS, met with senior officials from India, Kazakhstan, and other SCO member states. They reviewed the state of regional security and discussed the need to coordinate cooperation among competent authorities in countering foreign terrorist organizations. The meetings also considered ways to deepen SCO-CICA security cooperation further. A draft report will be presented to the SCO Council of States.
Russia and India share interests in South Asia. Pakistan is a small country with a limited scope of influence and power. Despite its limited size, Pakistan is an essential piece of the emerging geopolitical chessboard in South Asia. It leverages its strategic position, military strength, and significant Islamic influence to leverage the region. So, the strategic trajectories between India and Pakistan are likely to widen and deepen.
Afghanistan’s situation under the Taliban regime
A critical anti-terror meeting under the auspices of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is beginning in New Delhi. Delegations from member states of the SCO are attending the Regional Anti-Terror Structure (RATS) meeting. On Saturday, a three-member delegation from Pakistan arrived in India via the Wagah border crossing. They will remain in India until May 20. The meeting comes as SCO members discuss how to combat terrorism in Afghanistan.
The focus of the SCO anti-terror meet is forming a government inclusive of all Afghans. The severe humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan is an essential topic of discussion. The US withdrew from Afghanistan last year, and the Taliban took over the country. While they promised more moderate rule, they have imposed orthodox measures to suppress women’s rights and free speech. This may be the only way to bring about peace and development in Afghanistan and across the region.
A delegation from Pakistan’s foreign affairs ministry participates in the SCO anti-terror meet. The Pakistani delegation is the first from the country since the new government took office in Islamabad. The SCO grouping includes Russia, China, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. India has assumed chairmanship of the SCO’s Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure, or RATS.
National security advisers from SCO member countries will discuss Afghanistan’s instability at the meeting. The national security advisers of these countries will also discuss the threat posed by terrorism, trafficking, and radicalism in Afghanistan. In addition to Afghanistan, the SCO members will discuss the threat of radical Islam and global terrorism. The participants will also discuss the issue of Afghanistan, as it will help find a solution to the conflict in Afghanistan.