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Russian defense minister: India's SCO accession opens up new prospects for cooperation

India's accession to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) opens up new prospects for cooperation between New Delhi and Moscow, Russian Defense Minister Army General Sergei Shoigu said at a meeting of the Russian-Indian inter-governmental commission for military and technical cooperation.

"We welcome India's accession to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization as it opens up new prospects for cooperation," the Russian defense minister said.

Shoigu pointed out that Russia and India had been maintaining privileged strategic partnership for many decades.

"Over the past years, Russia and India have been able to develop particularly close friendly relations, consistent and trust based," the Russian defense minister added. "It was once again confirmed at the recent meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, which took place in St. Petersburg on June 1," he noted.

According to Shoigu, regular meetings between the two countries' leaders give strong impetus to bilateral cooperation, particularly in the defense sphere. "The consolidated position of our countries is a factor for global stability," he concluded.

Leaders of the SCO member states signed the document on the accession of India and Pakistan at the summit held in Kazakhstan's capital of Astana on June 9.

[Source: Itar Tass, Moscow, 23Jun17]

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