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The Shanghai Cooperation Organization: A Fading Star?

Richard Weitz

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) stands at a pivotal point in its history. On the one hand, the growing ties between Russia and China as well as the withdrawal of the Western powers from Central Asia and Afghanistan could provide it with more cohesive leadership and more opportunities to become Eurasia’s dominant security institution. On the other hand, the SCO faces competition from the Russian-led Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) and the new Eurasian Union as well as the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building in Asia (CICA), a body that has labored in the SCO’s shadow but has recently attracted the interest of China, historically the SCO’s main champion.

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