Colombo, June 10 (Xinhua/newsin.asia): In a passionate appeal for unity directed at a badly divided world, Chinese President Xi Jinping asked members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) to sideline their differences and work together for mutually beneficial common goals.
Xi was speaking at the 18th Meeting of the Council of Heads of Member States of the SCO in the coastal city of Qingdao, in east China’s Shandong Province. The full members of the SCO are China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyztan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
Speaking on the first day of the summit held on June 9 and 10, Xi said:“ The Shanghai Spirit’s focus on seeking common ground while setting aside differences and pursuing mutually beneficial cooperation, has won widespread international endorsement and support.”
In his address on the second day on June 10 the Chinese Supremo said: “The Shanghai Spirit, transcending outdated concepts such as clash of civilizations, Cold War and zero-sum mentality, has opened a new page in the history of international relations and gained increasing endorsement of the international community.”
“The Shanghai Cooperation Organization has created a new model for regional cooperation and made new contributions to peace and development in the region,” he added.
“In five days, the SCO will celebrate its 17th birthday. Over the past 17 years, guided by the SCO Charter and the Treaty on Long-Term Good Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation Between the Member States of the SCO, we have forged a constructive partnership featuring non-alliance, non-confrontation and not targeting any third party,” Xi said.
“In doing so, we have achieved a major breakthrough in the theories and practices of international relations, created a new model for regional cooperation, and made new contribution to peace and development in our region,” he said.
“Today, the SCO stands as a comprehensive regional cooperation organization that covers the largest area and population in the world. Its members account for about 20 percent of the global economy and 40 percent of its population,” Xi said.
The SCO has four observer states and six dialogue partners as well as extensive cooperation linkages with the United Nations and other international and regional organizations, the Chinese leader said.
“With its ever rising international influence, the SCO has become an important force for promoting global peace and development and upholding international justice and fairness, “ he claimed.
“The SCO enjoys strong vitality and momentum of cooperation. This, in the final analysis, is attributed to the Shanghai Spirit, a creative vision initiated and followed through by the SCO that champions mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, consultation, respect for diverse civilizations and pursuit of common development,” Xi said.
Birthplace of Confucianism
Xi recalled that Shandong was the home province of Confucius and birthplace of Confucianism.
“Confucianism believes that a just cause should be pursued for the common good and champions harmony, unity and a shared community for all nations.
Its emphasis on unity and harmony has much in common with the Shanghai Spirit, namely, mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, consultation, respect for diverse civilizations and pursuit of common development,” Xi said.
Setting Sail In Search of Dreams
On the significance of holding the conference in Qingdao, Xi said that was a famous international port from where “many ships set sail in pursuit of dreams.”
“The Qingdao summit is a new departure point for us. Together, let us hoist the sail of the Shanghai Spirit, break waves and embark on a new voyage for our organization,” Xi said.
(The featured image at top shows Chinese President Xi Jinping receiving Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the SCO summit in Qingdao)