President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: I want to welcome everyone taking part in this meeting of defence ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation member states here in Moscow. I have just heard from Russia’s defence minister that your meeting was productive, fruitful, and that you have outlined concrete steps for future cooperation. I think a meeting of this kind was essential, because like the regular Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summits, these meetings with colleagues lay the foundations for cooperation between our countries in a wide range of areas, including military and military-technical cooperation. This is only natural because, although the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation is not a military bloc or military organisation, in accordance with its charter it nonetheless has to address a wide range of tasks: it has to help member countries guarantee their security and protect themselves from the most complex and serious modern threats such as terrorism, narcotics, and other threats and challenges that our countries face today.
Overall, the region in which the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation operates is a complex one, and so we have to take into account the reality that surrounds us, and the need for our countries to jointly coordinate efforts on a wide range of issues, including security and defence capability of our countries on a collective basis.
I am sure that we will hold more meetings of this kind. I think they are useful, and I hope that results of today’s work will help the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation to achieve its objectives, and help us to achieve our national objectives of improving our defence capability and guaranteeing greater security for our countries and peoples.