Commencing the proceedings, the Head of State, representing Kazakhstan, the incumbent chair of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, conveyed profound condolences to the populace and leadership of Iran following the lamentable demise of the President and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the nation.


Kassym-Jomart Tokayev underscored the significance of the Council of Foreign Ministers of States as a pivotal forum within the SCO framework for addressing pertinent matters across the extensive agenda.


– Separately, I would like to note that respected representatives of Iran, despite the difficult times for the country, as well as Belarus, which will soon join our ranks, are participating for the first time in the work of the Ministerial Council in Astana. I am convinced that your countries will make a significant contribution to the further strengthening of the “Shanghai spirit” and the deepening of multilateral cooperation within the SCO. Our organization already unites ten states of the Eurasian continent, which are home to almost half the world’s population and account for a quarter of world GDP and 15% of world trade. Kazakhstan, as the chairman of the SCO, is making every effort to further strengthen the potential of the Organization,” the Head of State said.


He expressed gratitude to the participating countries for their support of Kazakhstani initiatives and fruitful joint work. As the President noted, more than 100 large-scale events were held, including the SCO digital, tourism and energy forums.


– Work on the “Spiritual Shrines” project of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization countries is nearing completion. On our initiative, 2024 has been declared the SCO Year of Ecology. The Government of Kazakhstan continues to prepare for a number of additional significant events in the fields of energy, transport and culture. Of course, we pay great attention to the upcoming Astana SCO summit. The Council of Foreign Ministers has great responsibility for the quality preparation of this important Forum for our countries. I highly appreciate your work in putting together a solid package of documents and decisions. More than 20 documents of this kind were submitted to the Council of Heads of State for consideration. I am confident that their effective implementation will make a significant contribution to strengthening the comprehensive partnership within the SCO,” Kassym-Jomart Tokayev emphasized.


In his opinion, in conditions of global strategic uncertainty, the use of an integrated approach, taking into account the interests of all parties and the constant search for compromises is of particular importance. The head of state believes that the time has come to collectively promote the ideals and values of peaceful and harmonious development for the sake of all humanity.


“That is why Kazakhstan proposed to develop the SCO Initiative “On World Unity for a Just Peace and Harmony.” The adoption of this document, as well as the SCO Astana Declaration during the upcoming Summit, will, in our opinion, contribute to the consolidation of international efforts to resolve conflicts in various regions of the world. Further steps in reforming the SCO require special attention. The active participation of member states in the development of specific decisions to improve the activities of our Organization deserves high praise. Kazakhstan, for its part, presented balanced proposals for transforming the SCO into an effective multilateral cooperation mechanism. We hope for further support for these initiatives,” the President said.


As noted in the speech, the work to increase the SCO’s potential in overcoming common challenges and threats has become very timely. In this context, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev believes that the constant focus of the Organization’s cooperation should remain the fight against the so-called “three forces of evil.”


– Kazakhstan is invariably committed to deepening cooperation in this direction. A practical step here will be the Cooperation Program to combat terrorism, separatism and extremism that you have agreed upon. In turn, the completion of work on the SCO Anti-Drug Strategy will strengthen the mutual measures taken to combat the drug threat, including blocking terrorist financing channels. All these achievements become a clear example of coordinated and concrete steps to ensure stability and security in the Organization’s space. This is important from the point of view of strengthening its position in the global architecture of international relations, increasing the authority and role of the SCO in the world,” the Head of State noted.


The President also touched upon cybersecurity issues. He believes that the main emphasis in this work should be on early identification of cyber threats and the development of mechanisms to ensure the stable functioning of the information infrastructure of the SCO countries.


– The situation in Afghanistan deserves close attention. It is important to continue efforts to prevent a humanitarian crisis in this country and create conditions for long-term stabilization. Of particular relevance is supporting Kazakhstan’s initiative to create a UN Regional Center for Sustainable Development Goals for Central Asia and Afghanistan in Almaty. We must pay special attention to the issue of climate change. Without urgent preventive measures, this problem can plunge our planet into a dramatic period of global natural disasters. Extreme weather conditions are becoming one of the world’s major challenges. In this regard, it is necessary to update the SCO approaches to combating natural disasters. This spring , Kazakhstan fully felt the negative consequences of climate change. Taking this opportunity, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to your countries for the solidarity shown and assistance provided during the large-scale unprecedented floods in Kazakhstan. We highly appreciate this support,” said Kassym-Jomart Tokayev.


The head of state said that the upcoming Astana SCO summit will be held under the slogan “Strengthening multilateral dialogue – the pursuit of sustainable peace and development.”


– This agenda fully reflects one of the main goals of the Shanghai Organization – ensuring peace, security and stable development in the region. Great expectations in this context are placed on the Council of Foreign Ministers. I am confident that the results of your work will contribute to the successful holding of the upcoming meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State in Astana,” said the leader of Kazakhstan.


The President thanked the heads of foreign policy departments for their active work on the eve of the Astana SCO summit.


– We hope that this summit will write a bright page in the history of the activities of our common organization, which occupies a very important place in the global architecture. Indeed, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization is receiving a lot of attention around the world. Other powers are interested in our activities. A lot of questions are asked regarding the SCO. I had the opportunity to be present at the creation of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in April 1996. At that time this organization was called the Shanghai Five. It was then that the so-called spirit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization was laid, and it is very good that we are consistently strengthening the basic principles of our interaction in the interests of peace and security in Asia, on the Eurasian continent and, one might say, throughout the world,” Kassym-Jomart summed up his speech Tokaev.


The meeting was attended by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Deputy Prime Minister – Foreign Minister of Pakistan Muhammad Ishaq Dar, Deputy Prime Minister – Foreign Minister of Kazakhstan Murat Nurtleu , Foreign Minister of Kyrgyzstan Jeenbek Kulubaev , Minister of Foreign Affairs of Tajikistan Sirojiddin Mukhriddin , Minister of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan Bakhtiyor Saidov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus Sergei Aleynik, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of India Ravi Dammu, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iran Mehdi Safari, Secretary General of the SCO Zhang Min, Director of the Executive Committee of the SCO RATS Ruslan Mirzaev.



Source: Television and radio complex of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan