Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari used his speech at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization’s (SCO) Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) on Friday to urge member countries not to use terrorism as a diplomatic instrument.
On the second day of his visit to India, the foreign minister emphasized the importance of greater cooperation among SCO countries in combating terrorism, calling for collaborative efforts to address the issue’s root causes.
“We share responsibility for our peoples’ collective security.” Let us not use terrorism to score diplomatic points,” Bilawal was cited as saying by the Foreign Office (FO).
Earlier, Indian Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar addressed the SCO meeting, in which he highlighted the issue of cross-border terrorism.
The minister was cited as adding, “Members need not be reminded that combating terrorism is one of the original mandates of the SCO.”
According to the Hindustan Times, Jaishankar stated that the unfolding scenario in Afghanistan following the Taliban’s return to power “remains at the centre of our attention,” and that all efforts should be oriented towards the welfare of the Afghan people.
Bilawal’s speech also addressed terrorism and Islamabad’s commitment to Afghanistan.
The FO quoted Bilawal as saying in a Twitter thread, “Unilateral and illegal measures by states in violation of international law and Security Council resolutions run counter to the SCO objectives.”
“When great powers play the role of peacemaker, we can unlock the potential of peace while also paving the way for greater cooperation, regional integration, and economic opportunities for our peoples,” he continued.
Bilawal also stressed upon the SCO’s importance for Pakistan: “There couldn’t be a more powerful indication of the importance that Pakistan attaches to the SCO than my presence here in Goa for this CFM.”