Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi in the Uzbek city of Samarkand on September 14, 2022

Iran’s President Raisi In Uzbekistan For Shanghai Cooperation Summit

Wednesday, 09/14/2022

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi arrived in the Uzbek city of Samarkand on Wednesday for a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

Welcomed by Uzbekistan's Prime Minister Abdulla Aripov, Raisi and his accompanying delegation are also scheduled to hold meetings with the SCO's heads of state on the sidelines of the summit. Before embarking on the three-day visit, Raisi said he was going to Uzbekistan at the invitation of his Uzbek counterpart Shavkat Mirziyoyev.

"In the first step of developing the neighborhood policy, we were able to strengthen mutual political trust in the region, and in the second step, we are pursuing the effective role of the Islamic Republic of Iran and its active presence in the region," he said. 

Iran has been hoping to become a full member of the Shanghai Organization for many years, and at last year's meeting of the organization, it was agreed that Iran would change its status from an observer member to a permanent member. Tehran started a formal process for accession to the bloc in March, and is expected to complete the accession procedure next year.

Becoming a SCO member helps the Islamic Republic take the advantage of using the infrastructure that exists in Asia and in the neighboring countries, Raisi claimed. 

Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Diplomacy, Mehdi Safari, said on Wednesday that the status of Iran’s membership will be determined after this trip.

Earlier on Wednesday, government's spokesman Ali Bahadori Jahromi said the draft legislation outlining Iran's membership in the organization had been submitted to parliament for approval.

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