The conference of the foreign ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, which opened in Moscow on Friday, marks the last step before the Organisation's summit due in St. Petersburg in June, said Alexander Yakovenko, the official spokesman for the Russian foreign ministry. The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation includes Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and China. According to the diplomat, the meeting in St. Petersburg "will largely be of vital importance for the prospects of the Organisation." The summit meeting is to sign the Charter turning the Organisation into a full-scale international institution. This aspect, noted Yakovenko, dominates the agenda of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation foreign ministers' meeting in Moscow. The diplomat continued that the accent would be laid on "the preparations for the summit, above all the completion of the organisational and international-contractual basis of the Organisation in accordance with the Declaration on the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation's Foundation of June 15th, 2001." The sides will also exchange opinions on pressing international issues of mutual interest. "Besides the fundamental founding document /the Charter/, defining the structure and basic principles of the Organisation's activities, many additional "profile" agreements are still to be drafted as well as other regulatory documents specifying separate provisions of the Charter," said Yakovenko. "This task," he noted, "looks even more huge in the context of the agreement between the six heads of state, fixed in the June Declaration, on setting up the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation as a mechanism for multilateral co-operation in various areas: political, economic, science-technical, cultural, environmental and others. "The Shanghai Co-operation Organisation's formation is in full swing-the work over the Charter is coming to a close and the range of accompanying agreements has been mapped out," said the official spokesman for the Russian foreign ministry.
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