China view on SCO summit: Iran welcome, need to ‘save’ group from India

Source– The post is based on the article “China view on SCO summit: Iran welcome, need to ‘save’ group from India” published in “The Indian Express” on 11th July 2023.

Syllabus: GS2- BIlateral groupings and agreements

Relevance– India and US bilateral relationship

News- The membership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is growing. Iran is the newest entrant at the just-concluded 23rd leaders’ summit in New Delhi.

India’s association with the SCO began in 2005 as an Observer country, and it became a full Member State at the Astana Summit in 2017.

What are the viewpoints of the Chinese strategic community about India’s membership of SCO?

China’s strategic affairs community was opposed to the SCO membership of India. India’s role and presence within the grouping is compared to Turkey in North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Foreign policy analysts in China have welcomed Iran’s entry. It will prevent India from completely destroying the SCO.

India is spreading disharmony within the SCO. It is openly opposing the Belt and Road Initiative and unwilling to support the initiative to set up an SCO Development Bank.

India has actually used its SCO membership as a “platform” to challenge and embarrass China.

Some observers believe that India was accepted as a full member on Moscow’s insistence. The purpose was to counterbalance China for advocating Pakistan’s inclusion into the organisation.

China agreed to the Russian viewpoint that unity between Moscow, Beijing, and New Delhi is necessary for challenging US-led Western dominance in Asia, or particularly in Central Asia and Eurasia.

Moscow was wooing India for purchasing Russian weapons, and put pressure on Beijing to keep it sandwiched between Moscow and New Delhi.

China was surprised when New Delhi joined the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue gathering in Manila when Doklam was continuing.

Despite India joining the SCO and Wuhan and Chennai friendship summits in 2018 and 2019, the Doklam standoff was precursor to the Galwan border clash.

Many scholars have called for expelling India from the SCO. They point to the success of Modi’s official state visit to the US.

Some voices in China are demanding for the SCO “exit mechanism” and impose appropriate “constraints” on member states.

As per scholars, New Delhi has made deliberate efforts by suddenly transforming the first Indian presidency summit of the SCO into a mere two-hour online affair.

Print Friendly and PDF