"Our relations with these countries will be moved to a much different position with this step," says Turkish President Erdogan, in reference to members of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.

Türkiye is currently a dialogue partner of the SCO, whose members are China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
Türkiye is currently a dialogue partner of the SCO, whose members are China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. (Reuters Archive)

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said he was targeting membership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) for Türkiye during a summit in Uzbekistan, Turkish media reported.

"Our relations with these countries will be moved to a much different position with this step," Erdogan said on Saturday.

When asked if he meant membership of the SCO, he said, "Of course, that's the target".

Erdogan, who attended the regional summit in Samarkand city, flew to New York to attend the 77th UN General Assembly.

Türkiye is currently a dialogue partner of the SCO, whose members are China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

On Friday, Erdogan told SCO attended by Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin that he wanted the offensive in Ukraine to end "as soon as possible".

Erdogan has been trying to use his good working relations with Moscow to try and persuade Putin to hold direct ceasefire talks with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Türkiye.

"We are making efforts to finalise the conflict in Ukraine through diplomacy as soon as possible," Erdogan said.

Erdogan also echoed Putin's concern that grain shipped out of Ukraine under a Turkish-brokered agreement was not reaching enough developing countries.

"We are making sincere efforts to deliver the grain to those who need it most, especially our brothers and sisters in Africa," Erdogan said.

READ MORE: What is the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation?

Source: Reuters