Malaysia urges OIC to address challenges confronting the “Ummah”

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KUALA LUMPUR: The Islamic Summit Conference is a gathering of self-reflection on various challenges confronting the Ummah and how the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) should move forward in addressing these challenges.

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan said, the theme – “Enhancing Unity and Solidarity Through Dialogue for Sustainable Development” – reflects our collective pronouncement towards realizing the goals and principles enshrined in the OIC Charter.

“It demands sincerity and strong political will, from all of us, in forging a truly one Muslim world. The unity that fosters cooperation in upholding and promoting peace which in turn drives sustainable development across the Ummah and the world at large.

“As we speak, the bitter truth sadly remains. Muslim countries continue to suffer from conflicts and crises that hamper economic and social development.

“The Palestinians continue to be deprived of their fundamental human rights, including their right to self-determination from Israel’s decades-long illegal occupation,” said Mohamad.

Mohamad said that when delivering Malaysia’s National Statement at the Islamic Summit Conference in Banjul, The Gambia today (5th May 2024).

The Minister added the Palestinians are confronting genocide and crimes against humanity by the Zionist regime. The escalation of tensions in the Middle East will undoubtedly risk the global economy and progress of the Ummah.

“While we appreciate the maximum restraint by all parties concerned, the OIC must work with the international community to address the root cause of the problem: that is, Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine for more than seven decades.

“The OIC must remain relevant and stand firmly with the oppressed; propagate peace; and uphold the sanctity of the international justice system. The OIC must be the voice to educate the misguided or misinformed masses so that they understand the legal and historical aspects of the Palestinian cause.

“Only then can we see progress. The OIC must continue working relentlessly, with like-minded countries, in pursuit of four key priority areas: Firstly, institute an immediate and permanent ceasefire; Secondly establish safe and unhindered access for delivery of aid; Thirdly, ensure accountability for violations of international law; and; Fourthly, admission of Palestine as a full member of the United Nations, its rightful place among the community of nations, that has long been denied.

“We must not let any differences divert our attention from those objectives,” Mohamad said.

Mohamad urged the OIC to redouble the efforts in combating the surge in Islamophobia. OIC must work closely with the UN Special Envoy to combat Islamophobia, a proud tangible result of our collective effort at the United Nations.

“On Malaysia’s part, we have been active in promoting inter-religious and inter-cultural dialogues in fostering peace, moderation and religious tolerance. These dialogues would bridge the gap of misunderstandings and mistrust leading to Islamophobia.

“In February 2023, Malaysia hosted the International Forum on Islamophobia: Meaningful Engagement through MADANI Discourse where academicians, religious leaders, diplomats, and activists participated in discussing religious tolerance and understanding,” he added.

Mohamad highlighted that Malaysia will be organizing the “International Conference of Religious Leaders” from 7 to 8 May 2024 with the theme “Diversity in Unity”, and hopes Muslim leaders, scholars, and various religious leaders from all over the world will join and help us overcome this gap, in achieving the peaceful co-existence and religious harmony the world needs today.

According to Mohamad, the OIC must also continue its efforts to assist Muslim minorities and communities outside the Member States, including the Rohingya, to safeguard their dignity, and cultural and religious identity and to improve their circumstances.

He said, Malaysia too has played our role through the hosting of “The Eighth OIC-IPHRC International Seminar: Islamic Perspectives on the Protection of Refugees” in October 2022. The outcome of the Seminar – the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on Rights and Access to Education for Refugees – serves as the guideline for OIC countries to provide access to education for refugees in their countries.

“Poverty eradication and socio-economic development have always been among the top priorities for the OIC. We would only be able to realize the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development if we address these two areas effectively. We must strengthen our economic cooperation and trade ties among the OIC Member States, as espoused in the OIC Plan of Action 2016-2025.

“In efforts to strengthen international cooperation, Malaysia organised the first phase of the Fifteenth International Conference on Islamic Economic and Finance in March 2024 with the theme: “Driving the Agenda for a Sustainable Human Economy”.

“We will continue this effort and organise the third phase of the Conference, which will be elevated to the Global Forum on Islamic Economic and Finance from 28 to 29 May 2024 with the theme: “Shaping a Resilient Global Islamic Economy through Values-based Reforms.”

“The Forum will bring a unique focus on the importance of Islamic economics and finance as a solution in creating a more resilient, sustainable and equitable economic development globally,” Mohamad said –Malaysia World News.


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