the meeting with leaders of Yunnan Province
Rashid Alimov: “The SCO International Marathon in Kunming has become a signature event for the organisation.” Representatives of the SCO Family meet with leaders of Yunnan Province, China

The SCO Family delegation met with the leaders of Yunnan Province, China, at Kunming's government office building on 30 December 2017, on the eve of the second SCO International Marathon.

Speaking on behalf of the SCO delegation, the organisation's Secretary-General Rashid Alimov expressed his deep gratitude to the government of Yunnan Province and the city of Kunming for their warm hospitality and excellent preparations for the SCO International Marathon, as well as for the atmosphere of friendship and cordiality that prevails in the City of Eternal Spring.

The SCO Secretary-General went on to say that at the last meeting of the SCO Heads of Government in Sochi the heads of national delegations welcomed the holding of the SCO Kunming International Marathon on 31 December 2017. "The fact that the heads of government of the SCO member states spoke out in favour of holding this marathon emphasises Kunming's emerging status as a top Eurasian international sports, cultural and educational destination. The SCO Kunming International Marathon has become a signature event not only for your wonderful city, but also for the entire Shanghai Cooperation Organisation," Mr Alimov pointed out.

The SCO Secretary-General congratulated the leaders of Yunnan Province and Kunming on their wonderful achievements and thanked the Organising Committee, the Chinese Athletic Association, local residents, cultural figures and journalists, volunteers and sponsors for the excellent organisation of the marathon and related events to the highest international standards.

Yunnan Province Governor Ruan Chengfa expressed gratitude for the opportunity to host the SCO International Marathon in Kunming as a symbol of the shared goals and aspirations of the countries and peoples within the SCO.

The SCO Family delegation at the meeting included SCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Afghanistan to the People's Republic of China Janan Mosazai, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Sri Lanka to the People's Republic of China Karunasena Kodituwakku, SCO Deputy Secretary-General Wang Kaiwen, permanent representatives and high-ranking members of the diplomatic corps from SCO Family countries.

The Yunnan Province was represented at the meeting by Permanent Committee Member and head of propaganda at Yunnan Party Committee Zhao Jin, Deputy Governor of Yunnan Province Gao Feng, Director of the Foreign Affairs Office at Yunnan Provincial Government Li Jiming and Kunming Mayor Wang Xiliang.

Dilshod Nazarov, gold medal winner at the 2016 Rio Olympics and Deputy Head of the Committee for Youth Affairs and Sport in the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan, was also present at the meeting as the guest of honour of the SCO Kunming International Marathon.

The meeting was held in a friendly and warm atmosphere, like every SCO Family event.

The second SCO International Marathon will take place on 31 December 2017 in Kunming, China. As many as 16,000 people from 27 countries are expected to take part in this large sports event.