Saudi Arabia Joins Chinese Led Security Bloc

Objectivity 4.8 | Credibility 4.8 | Relevance 4.8

Saudi Arabia’s cabinet has approved a memorandum to join the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) with a “dialogue partner status” which is a first step to full membership.  The SCO was formed in 2001 by China, Russia and former Soviet states in Central Asia to counter Western influence and has since grown to include India, Pakistan and Iran. The move was discussed during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to the kingdom in December and comes shortly after the Beijing-brokered talks which resulted in Saudi Arabia and Iran renewing diplomatic ties. Saudi Arabia’s recent deepening of ties with China is seen as a lack of confidence in America’s historical role as the country’s security partner.