China-Russia-Iran would be more in the eye of West — and so could be India

  • What you’ve read is a lament on no mention of UN Charter (Indian Express) in the Samarkand Declaration: That is, an attempt to show this as a renegades’ pow-wow against the global order.
  • We are told with certain glee that prime minister Narendra Modi ignored China’s XI Jinping or that there was no cheer from India on its core BRI (Belt and Road Initiative) policy.
  • You might have read Modi emphasizing on 30% GDP and 40% population in the ambit of SCO members but it’s also gainful to remember that world’s largest energy reserves as well as major energy-consuming nations were present in Samarkand.
  • What you mustn’t have read is that SCO members as one wanted “all parties” to comply with the 2015 Iran nuclear deal which the US, an original signatory, left in 2018 to slap sanctions on Iran. Now the US is back on the negotiation table, looking ways to revive the nuclear deal but marathon talks have led nowhere.
  • Or for that matter that it’s not just Russia (Rubles), China (Yuan) or India (Rupee) but also Turkey (Lira) which is looking for trade in mutual currencies.
  • Or that the members have begun a process to admit Belarus to the SCO. Or in case you missed, Iran was formally anointed as ninth member of the grouping and was the star of the show.
  • Or when XI said in his address that the SCO would work to prevent outside forces (read US/NATO) from organising Colour Revolutions (coups) in their countries. Xi also mentioned China and Russia as “responsible global powers” — implied the other is not — against a unipolar worldview.
  • Or that this so-called regional grouping is now increasingly looking international: Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Egypt will formally become SCO dialogue partner; negotiations would be held in granting Bahrain, the Maldives and other states’ on a similar status.
  • Or that Iranian president Ebrahim Raeisi, whom Modi met for a private session, has called on SCO member states to adopt new approaches to confront the US’ unilateralism and “cruel sanctions”.



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Ashish Shukla

Ashish Shukla


Author, International journalist, Publishes as antidote to media lies