New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Russia on Tuesday welcomed India's intention to join the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) and said that India's entry into the group as permanent member will increase the relevance of the organisation.
The Indo-Russia joint statement titled 'celebrating a decade of the India Russia federation strategic partnership and looking ahead' states: "The President of the Russia Federation welcomed India's intention to join the organisation as a full member, which he said would increase the political weight and give a new quality and dimension to cooperation in this association."
Russia also agreed to make efforts along with other SCO members to accelerate the India's entry into the organization.
In June 2010, the SCO approved the procedure of admitting new members, though new members have yet to be admitted. Several states including India, Iran, Pakistan, Mangolia however, participate as observers, some of whom have expressed interest in becoming full members in the future.
SCO, which has emerged as an important factor for regional security and cooperation in Eurasian region comprised of China, Russia, and Central Asia nations Kazhakistan, Krygistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.
With its growing economic clout, India is looking to expand its sphere of strategic relations especially in Central Asia, which is dominated by Chinese economic clout.
During a joint press conference earlier, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev also reiterated Russia's support for India's aspiration of becoming a permanent member at the United Nations Security Council.
"Russia considers India as a strong and most deserving candidate for the United Nations Security Council," said President Medvedev.
After UK, US, France, Russia is the fourth nation to express unambiguous support to India's aspiration of becoming a permanent member at UNSC.
The Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China, Wen Jiabao, who visited India last week gave vague support to India playing a greater role at UNSC.
India and Russia signed 30 pacts in the field of nuclear, defence, hydrocarbons, oil and gas and space and have also agreed to increase coordination and cooperation in global multilateral forums and issues. By Naveen Kapoor (ANI)