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Ukrainian-born Russian PhD student on youth's role in SCO

Enoch Wong

 , Updated 17:18, 03-Jul-2024

As the 24th Meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) opens in Astana, Kazakhstan, discussions on regional stability and cooperation take center stage. Russia, a key member of multilateral organizations such as the SCO and BRICS, is prominently involved. In an interview with CGTN's Enoch Wong, Ukrainian-born Russian PhD student Melissa Baidak, now studying at Beijing Foreign Studies University, shares her unique perspective on the role of youth in these organizations.

A journey from Ukraine to Russia


Baidak's journey from Ukraine to Russia began in 2014 due to her father's work situation, eventually leading her family to Novosibirsk. Her upbringing straddled both cultures, offering her a perspective on the similarities and differences between the two nations. Despite the political tensions, she highlights the shared cultural and literary heritage that binds Ukraine and Russia, noting the influence of Russian literature in her early education and the ongoing significance of Ukrainian culture in her life.

Multilateralism to promote regional stability


Discussing multilateral organizations such as the SCO and BRICS, Baidak underscores their critical role in fostering regional stability and cooperation. These organizations, she argues, provide essential platforms for dialogue not just on political issues but also on cultural and humanitarian matters. By promoting deeper connections between member states, they help address complex international challenges and facilitate a more integrated and stable region.

Youth as cultural ambassadors


Baidak passionately advocates for the role of youth in promoting cultural exchange and mutual understanding. She believes young people are uniquely positioned to bridge divides through shared interests such as music and literature. By engaging in cultural dialogues, they can foster empathy and appreciation across borders, contributing to a more harmonious global community.

Building a shared future

Ukrainian-born Russian PhD student on youth's role in SCO

Baidak concludes by urging cooperation and unity among the young people of the SCO member nations. She envisions a future where young people work together to create innovative solutions and build lasting peace. As the SCO summit unfolds, her insights serve as a reminder of the vital role that the next generation plays in shaping a more cooperative and connected world.

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