With affirmation of support for Palestine and Jammu and Kashmir disputes.
OIC Secretary General Hissein Brahim Taha, while speaking at a media conference at the end of the 48th meeting of the 57-member body, said: “Palestine remains high on the agenda of OIC and was discussed thoroughly. All participating ministers reiterated their support for the Palestine cause.
“The question of Jammu and Kashmir was thoroughly discussed. This is a just cause. It has our full support. The conference reaffirmed our stance and reiterated support for the right of Kashmiri people to self-determination.”
Forty-six countries participated in the moot at the ministerial level, while the other countries were represented by senior officials. Nearly 800 delegates attended the meeting hosted by Islamabad. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi was the special guest at the conference. It was the first time in OIC’s history that a Chinese foreign minister attended its foreign ministers’ meeting, indicating Beijing’s expanding role in the Muslim world.
The meeting agenda included deliberations on the situation in Palestine, Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) and Afghanistan. Also, issues pertaining to Africa and Muslims in Europe and developments in Yemen, Libya, Sudan, Somalia and Syria were taken up at the meeting. Islamophobia, international terrorism and cooperation in economic, cultural, social, humanitarian, and scientific domains were the other subjects that were discussed. Pakistan has been hosting millions of Afghan refugees since the Soviet invasion, and many of the Muslim states with deep pockets can play a bigger role in ensuring that the people of Afghanistan get the financial and humanitarian help they need.
While such meetings have an important role to play where discussion of the Muslim world’s problems is concerned, there has long been legitimate criticism of the OIC’s lack of delivery and unity. True, OIC declarations are well-meaning and give the appearance of a united voice emerging from the Muslim bloc, but the reality is more sobering.
For example, at around the same time that officials waxed eloquent about the Palestine cause in Islamabad, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi was hosting the Israeli prime minister and the UAE’s top royal in his country. Moreover, a number of Muslim states have taken the lead in establishing ties with Israel at the expense of the Palestinians. Also, while the Islamabad Declaration contains solemn pledges to support the oppressed people of Kashmir, in reality very little is done by the majority of Muslim states to help end the subjugation of Kashmir. For instance, the UAE has sought to make investments in the disputed region, to the benefit of New Delhi.
The question of Jammu and Kashmir was thoroughly discussed. This is a just cause. It has our full support. The conference reaffirmed our stance and reiterated support for the right of Kashmiri people to self-determination