SCO: a pivotal mechanism for regional security cooperation

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BEIJING. April 11. KAZINFORM The seventh secretaries meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) security council will be held from April 11 to 12 in Beijing, with the regional security situation and security cooperation topping the agenda.

 Ahead of this year's SCO summit, member states -- China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan -- were given a chance to review the organization's past cooperation experience and outline the direction for future cooperation, Xinhua reports.

The SCO has served as a pivotal mechanism for regional security cooperation since it was established 10 years ago. Under the new security concept of mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality and consultation, the SCO has expanded cooperation in law enforcement and security cooperation.

Over the last decade the SCO member states have actively carried out internal legal system construction, joint exercises and law enforcement cooperation, and they have built up a security cooperation mechanism.

The SCO has developed a sound legal structure and a pragmatic cooperation mechanism based on international laws by signing a series of agreements, treaties and conventions on combating illicit arms trafficking, safeguarding international information security, training anti-terrorism personnel and jointly cracking down on cross-border crimes.

It is also worth noting that the SCO Counter-Terrorism Convention was the first international convention to define terrorist behavior and organizations, and the agreement on international information security among member states plays an irreplaceable role in international cooperation in this field.

The SCO established an annual anti-terrorism joint exercise mechanism in 2006 and has greatly curbed the effects of the "Three Evils," or separatism, extremism and terrorism.

The joint anti-terrorism drill code-named Tianshan-II (2011) was held in Kashi of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region last year. The drill was a great success and set records in joint anti-terrorism drills conducted by law enforcement and security departments among member states.

Over the past 10 years the SCO has gradually improved the reaction mechanism for emerging security threats in the region and established effective security cooperation mechanisms such as the secretaries meeting, defense ministers meeting and judicatory chiefs meeting, etc. These internal mechanisms have become an effective platform for member states to discuss international and regional security situations, cope with challenges and common threats in the region and combat cross-border crimes.

Poised at the starting line for a new decade of development, the SCO is expected to specify strategic goals in law enforcement, improve legal system construction and expand cooperation fields so as to prevent turmoil in Central Asia and promote lasting peace and stability among member states.

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