China, Russia Highlight ‘Tectonic Shifts in Global Politics’ | Politics News

The comments come at a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation – a regional bloc that Moscow and Beijing see as a counterweight to US “hegemony” on the world stage.

The presidents of China and Russia urged their allies to resist outside influence, saying global power centers were changing and a multipolar world was on the horizon.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping arrived in the Kazakh capital of Astana on Thursday for a meeting of leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization – a regional bloc that Moscow and Beijing see as a counterweight to US “hegemony” on the world stage.

Xi called on countries to “resist external interference,” while Putin said “new centers” of political and economic power were emerging.

“We must join hands to resist external interference, firmly support each other, care for each other’s concerns… and firmly control the future and destiny of our countries and regional peace and development in our own hands,” Xi said at the summit.

“It is of utmost importance to the world that the SCO be on the right side of history and on the side of fairness and justice.”

In a joint statement released by the Kremlin, the group noted “tectonic shifts in world politics” and called on the bloc to play a greater role in global and regional security.

“The use of force is increasing, the norms of international law are being systematically violated, geopolitical confrontations and conflicts are growing, and threats to stability in the world and the SCO region are multiplying,” the statement said.

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The final statement also called for an “early, complete and sustainable ceasefire” in Gaza with a “comprehensive and just settlement of the Palestinian issue.”

The statement did not mention Russia’s invasion of Ukraine or the conflict between China and Taiwan, but said the group “mutually respects the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of countries.”

President Vladimir Putin, left, talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping. [File: Sergey Bobylev/Sputnik via Reuters]

“A just world order”

Russia and China regularly attack what they say is U.S. dominance in world affairs and each seeks to increase its influence and control, especially in areas close to its borders.

“The multipolar world has become a reality,” Putin said in remarks at the summit, hailing the accession of close Russian ally Belarus to the bloc as its 10th member.

“The circle of countries that defend a just world order and are ready to resolutely defend their legitimate rights and protect traditional values ​​is expanding. New centers of power and economic growth are strengthening,” Putin said.

Iran, which is under Western sanctions, joined the Shanghai Cooperation Organization as a full member last year. The meeting on Thursday was also attended by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who is visiting Central Asia.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization was founded in 2001, but has gained significant importance in recent years. In addition to China, Russia and Belarus, the organization includes India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan as full members.

The organization aims to be a platform for cooperation in competition with the West, with a focus on security and economics, and Central Asia in particular. The SCO represents 40% of the world’s population and about 30% of global GDP.

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But it is a diverse group with many internal disputes, including territorial disputes.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has heightened major powers’ interest in Central Asia, where Moscow seeks to maintain its traditional influence but where China now has strong ties through its flagship Belt and Road infrastructure project.

The West is also competing for influence in the strategically important region, rich in oil and gas and a vital transport route between Asia and Europe.

In its final statement, the bloc criticised the “unilateral and unfettered construction” of missile defence systems by unnamed countries and regional alliances – a common complaint from Moscow and Beijing aimed at the United States.

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