ISLAMABAD - Foreign Minister Kh Mohammad Asif will represent Pakistan in the meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation scheduled for Tuesday in Beijing.

Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif would likely land in Beijing sometime on Sunday to attend the moot. He would also hold a bilateral meeting with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on the sidelines of the event.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will chair the meeting which is meant to lay groundwork for the SCO Qingdao Summit scheduled to be held in June.

The meeting will discuss issues related to peace and security at the international and regional level and promotion of cooperation among the member states.

At the invitation of State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif of Pakistan, Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj of India, Foreign Minister Kairat Abdrakhmanov of Kazakhstan, Foreign Minister Erlan Abdyldayev of Kyrgyzstan, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov of Russia, Foreign Minister Sirodjidin Aslov of Tajikistan, Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov of Uzbekistan, Secretary-General of the SCO Rashid Alimov and Director of the Executive Committee of the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure Yevgeniy Sysoyev will attend the meeting, according to a top Chinese diplomat.

Maintaining the security and stability of the region and promoting the common development and prosperity of member states are the purposes of the SCO. Since its establishment, the SCO has always put the security field as its key cooperation direction.

The council of the foreign ministers meeting will be the first one after the enlargement of SCO which is meant to lay a groundwork for the SCO Qingdao Summit in June.

During the meeting, the Chinese leadership will have a group meeting with the heads of the delegations. Foreign Minister Wang Yi will witness signing of the outcome documents while a press release based on consensus of the meeting will be issued.

The SCO summit will be held in Qingdao, a port city and a famous tourist spot in China in June this year. As the rotating president of the SCO, China will host this year’s summit.

President Mamnoon Hussain is likely to lead the delegation from Pakistan during the summit.

Pakistan became a full member of the SCO in June last year and has been playing an active role in the organisation which was founded at a Summit in Shanghai in 2001 by the presidents of Russia, China, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

The SCO comprises eight member states – China, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, India, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

The SCO has four members with observer states, including Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran and Mongolia.