Unilaterally changing status of disputed territories counter to SCO objective of regional amity: Qureshi

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Foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Thursday said any unilateral and illegal measures to change the status of disputed territories “run counter to the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation’s objective of amity in the region and must be opposed resolutely”.

In a series of tweets following his address at the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers meet in Moscow, Qureshi said that he had stressed on the peaceful resolution of outstanding disputes as per the United Nations Security Council’s resolutions.

Qureshi went on to share that he had “highlighted the opportunity to foster greater regional [co-operation] in this time of [COVID-19] crisis”.

“Pakistan has flattened COVID-19 curve to become a global best practice,” he said.

The foreign minister said Pakistan offered to share its strategy with member countries “in cognisance of the spirit of the SCO and working together against common threats”.

He said that stability in Afghanistan “is vital for regional prosperity” and was discussed during the meet.

“Pakistan has assiduously supported efforts for peace and reconciliation that is Afghan led and Afghan owned,” said the foreign minister.

“I stressed on SCO as key for connectivity and CPEC, flagship of BRI, supplements SCO vision for regional integration,” he added.

Qureshi said that his address also focused on reaffirming Pakistan’s belief in “the centrality of the Shanghai spirit”.

“In today’s environment, full of zero-sum prophecies, it is cooperation not confrontation that should drive international politics. Multilateral platforms like SCO thus exist as beacon of hope,” he said.

Talks during the meeting between foreign ministers are expected to focus on issues of mutual interest, including bilateral relations.

Qureshi is also expected to hold several meetings on the sidelines of the meet.