The Shanghai Cooperation Organization
(SCO) is one of the newest, multi-purpose
regional organizations, with an agenda that
ranges from broader security concerns to
economic cooperation. The founding members
of this organization are China, Kazakhstan,
Russia, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan, known as
the “Shanghai Five”. It was on June 15, 2001
that these five regional countries, along with
Uzbekistan, signed the Shanghai Convention
for combating terrorism, extremism, and
separatism--sometimes referred to as ‘the three
evils’. The SCO is a combination of permanent,
observer members and dialogue partners, each
having divergent interests. The most recent
(July 2015) significant enhancement to the
SCO was the final agreement to include
Pakistan and India as permanent members. It
has yet to be measured whether this grouping of
nations revolves more around mere rhetoric and
goodwill meetings or whether the understanding
can be translated into meaningful and concrete
deliberations.