Iran denounces ‘unilateralism’ as it becomes full SCO member

Iran denounces ‘unilateralism’ as it becomes full SCO member ... 18/09/2021 News, #China, #Dushanbe, #Ebrahim_Raisi, #India, #Iran, #Iranian, #Kazakhstan, #Kyrgyzstan, #Maziar, #Maziar_Motamedi, #Pakistan, #President, #Russia, #SCO, #Shanghai, #Shanghai_Cooperation_Organization, #Tajikistan, #Tehran, #United_States, #Uzbekistan

President Ebrahim Raisi sends message of regional multilateralism as Iran fully joins the influential Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
By Maziar Motamedi
17 Sep 2021
Tehran, Iran – President Ebrahim Raisi has said Iran wants closer ties with its regional neighbours and rejected the United States’s “unilateralism”, as his country became a full member of the influential Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).
Iran said on Friday it had been accepted as the eighth full member of the organisation during its annual conference in Tajikistan’s capital, Dushanbe. Senior officials from other full member states – namely China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan – were in attendance.
Iran had held observer status for the past 15 years. It expects the full membership to help it boost its economy and regional standing.
In a speech to the summit, newly elected Raisi predominantly emphasised his main stated foreign policy goal, which is to expand political, economic and cultural ties with countries across the region and protect Iran from unilateral punishments from the West.
He said Iran’s geopolitical position, population, energy supplies, transport potential, workforce and culture can provide “meaningful momentum” to major regional masterplans, including China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
“The world has entered a new era,” Raisi said. “Hegemony and unilateralism are failing. The international balance is moving toward multilateralism and redistribution of power to the benefit of independent countries.”
In this vein, the Iranian president referred to “sanctions or economic terrorism” as major hurdles for regional progress, and called on the SCO member states to develop structures and mechanisms to fight sanctions as a group.
“Unilateral sanctions are not against only one country,” he said. “As it has become evident in recent years, sanctions have targeted more independent countries, especially members of the organisation.”
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