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SCO Charter Amended as China Ratifies Protocol
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The top legislature on Friday adopted a protocol amending the charter of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).


The protocol was deliberated at the 25th session of the 10th Standing Committee of the National People's Congress from December 24 to 29.


Signed by President Hu Jintao in Shanghai in June, the protocol will redefine the functions of the SCO secretariat to cover provisions for coordination, information analysis and organization of SCO activities as well as overseeing suggestions for cooperation within and outside the organization and supervision of resolution implementation.


The secretariat began operating in January 2004 under the leadership of a "director," a post which was changed to "secretary-general" in the protocol.


The protocol would help the SCO take on a more active role in maintaining regional security and stability, while promoting common development among the SCO member countries, said Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing.


Established in 2001, the SCO is committed to fighting terrorism, separatism and extremism and maintaining regional peace, security and stability.


Its six member countries are China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, and its observer countries are Mongolia, Pakistan and India.


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(Xinhua News Agency December 30, 2006)



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