Pakistan and India became full-members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) on June 9, 2017 in Astana. This membership brings along with it challenges, and a lot of opportunities for both the countries.
Created as the Shanghai Five in 1996, the core objective of SCO was to ensure security and reduction of military forces at the borders of the core members. Under its umbrella, China had effectively stabilised its western border issues effectively. However, over the years, the SCO’s core objective has expanded, and security emphasis has grown from resolving border disputes to fighting issues of terrorism, separatism, and extremism. Yet, these undertakings have been relatively limited in scope and intensity, primarily due to the divergent interests of the members, which has prevented deeper cooperation.