Azerbaijan, Baku, 28 August/ Trend , G. Ahmadova, T. Jafarov, R. Ibrahimova/ The chances of Iran to become member of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) can be realized only by the support of Russia and China. " Iran can become member of this organization with the support of Russia and China. Iran and SCO member states intend to reach agreement on this issue," Muhammad Farhad Koleini, adviser of the Foreign Ministry of Iran for political affairs said to Trend .
Iran's Fars news agency reported on 27 August that the Ambassador of Tajikistan to Tehran Ramazan Mirzayev said Iran is the strongest country in the region. He added Iran's admission to Shanghai Cooperation Organization will strengthen this Organization. Tajikistan supports Iran's membership in SCO, Mirzayev said. He expressed his hope that problems concerning Iran's membership would be solved soon.
On 28 August, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrived in capital city of Dushanbe of Tajikistan to take part in SCO summit. At present Iran is observer in SCO.
Koleini said that Iran is interested in developing relations with SCO, but there special terms for observer states to become permanent members of the Organization. Now Iran seeks mutual agreement with SCO and member states of this organization are of different opinion about Iran's permanent accession.
" Iran will make a decision in line with its interests for the SCO membership. Moreover, Iran's admission to SCO is a matter which has nothing to do with West," Koleini said to Trend by telephone from Tehran.
Research fellow of World Economy and International Relations Institute of Academy of Sciences of Russia Vladimir Yevseyev said to Trend that Iran's accession to SCO should be unanimously supported by the permanent members of the organization. According to expert, Russia supports Iran in spite to West. In this case it is China who plays key role. China will have to make a choice that is either to support Iran's admission to SCO and at the same time to support Iran, or to take US's part.
"The position of Kazakhstan is also important. On the other hand, Kazakhstan has its interests in Iran as a sales market of its oil products and oil, on the other hand, there are US companies working in Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan's support for Iran will affect the work of these companies," Yevseyev said by telephone from Moscow.
It is possible that Iran's accession to SCO depends on position of China and on how US protects its interests, he said.
Concerning Iran's admission to SCO as a permanent member and given UN sanctions, these sanctions should not play main role in Iran's membership in SCO. However, there can be exceptions and therefore it is difficult predict outcome of the vote, he said.
Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan are permanent members of SCO. Iran, Mongolia and Pakistan are taking part as observers.
Thomas Valasek, director for foreign policy and defense of the European Reforms Center said to Trend that Iran's admission to SCO is connected with a number of geopolitical issues. Of course, US and other European states have assembled in excellent organization as NATO. US has called into question activities of SCO. And it can serve as one of the obstacles for Iran's membership. "Maybe, for these reasons, they want to keep Iran away from this organization. This can be results of the sanctions imposed against Iran. I do not think Iran will be admitted to SCPO membership," Valasek said to Trend by telephone from London.
Walker Perzes, director for international and defense issues of German University said to Trend that Iran is less likely to be admitted to SCO membership. "First of all, because Iran does not have necessary mechanisms for this membership. But all members of SCO will support this move. Second, Iran is not only country with a status of observer country," he added.
According to Perzes, Pakistan, Mongolia and India also have observer status. Pakistan also wants to become full right member of SCO. Though Pakistan submitted necessary documents on admission into membership in 2001, it was failure.
Afghanistan has special status in this organization (Afghan contact group). "If SCO admits Iran as a permanent member, West will see this as a move targeted against it. Iran's admission to SCO will not be in favor of this organization," Perzes said from Berlin.
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