Shanghai Cooperation Organization's Charter is legal foundation of a new international agency

By signing the Charter, its basic statutory document, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, SCO, provided a legal foundation of a new international agency, reads a declaration the SCO summiteers have signed in Petersburg.

Kazakhstan, China, Kyrghyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan believe that the establishment of the Organization was necessitated by current regional and global developments, and it promotes the above countries' national interests.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization has been set up to promote peace, mutual confidence, friendship and good-neighbourliness between the member countries; step up multilateral contacts aimed at maintaining and strengthening peace, security and stability in the region; and to offer a joint rebuff to modern-day challenges and threats, says the declaration.

The Organization's actions are based on principles of mutual respect for sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and inviolability of national borders, of non-interference with internal affairs, no-use of force or threat, and equality of the member states.

The six countries emphasise that the SCO is not a military bloc or a closed alliance, and its activities are not aimed against third countries. The Organization is open to wide cooperation with other countries and international organizations in accordance with the aims and principles laid down in the UN Charter and international law, and on the basis of mutual interests and common approaches to resolution of regional and world problems, according to the declaration.

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