Foreign Minister urges UN and OIC to develop action plan to end Islamophobia

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has urged the United Nations and the OIC to formulate an action plan to stop and reverse Islamophobia.

Chairing the annual coordination meeting of foreign ministers of member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation in New York, he stressed to the Islamic world that it must develop collective and concerted responses to political, economic, climatic and others who contract the modern world.

He said today that Islamophobia is manifested in negative profiling of Muslims, stigmatization, deliberate vandalism of Islamic symbols and holy sites, killings by vigilantes, discriminatory laws and policies, ban on hijab , attacks on mosques and anti-Muslim migration policies. .

The worst manifestation of such Islamophobia is found in Hindutva-inspired India. Driven by the ideology of hatred against Muslims, the BJP-RSS regime is carrying out its century-old plan to transform India into an exclusive Hindu state. We are particularly alarmed by recent calls by extremist groups for genocide against Indian Muslims.

He said the Covid-19 pandemic, rising commodity prices, climate change and a shrinking global economy have halted progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals in the developing world and, as a result, intensified inequalities within and between states, including many Islamic countries.

He said Islamic countries must carefully respond to these emerging realities and ensure that their vital interests are fully protected.

The foreign minister said that Kashmir is also our common cause. Jammu and Kashmir was forcibly occupied by India. The Security Council decided that the people of Jammu and Kashmir should be able to exercise their recognized right to self-determination through a UN-supervised plebiscite. India has reneged on its commitment to implement Security Council resolutions and respect the wishes of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

He said that since August 5, 2019, India has taken unilateral and illegal actions to undermine the internally recognized “disputed” status of Jammu and Kashmir. He increased his military deployments there to 900,000 troops and resorted to a campaign of brutal repression, including extrajudicial and custodial killings of Kashmiris; abduction of 15,000 young Kashmiri boys, many of whom were tortured; the incarceration of the entire leadership of Kashmir and the burning of villages and neighborhoods as collective punishment.

He said this campaign of oppression is fueled by Hindutva ideology and hatred of Muslims. Pakistan will continue to lend its full political, diplomatic and moral support to their struggle for freedom.

He said Pakistan wants peace with India. Yet, it is obvious that unless the Kashmir conflict is resolved, there will be no lasting peace between Pakistan and India. We are ready to resume a sincere dialogue with India for a peaceful settlement of the conflict in Jammu and Kashmir. However, it is India’s responsibility to create an enabling environment for such dialogue.

The oppressed people of occupied Jammu and Kashmir, now more than ever, look to the OIC and the Muslim Ummah to uphold their just cause of self-determination and liberation from Indian rule.

He said that Palestine is our common cause and must not forget that the raison d’etre of the OIC was to promote peace and justice for the people of occupied Palestine and to liberate Al-Quds al-Sharif. We must ensure the self-determination of our brothers and sisters in Palestine. They must have their own state, with pre-1967 borders, with Al-Quds-al-Sharif as the capital of a free Palestinian state. Pakistan remains committed to supporting the Palestinian cause.

With regard to Afghanistan, he said, after forty years, there is a real opportunity to restore lasting peace and security in Afghanistan and the region. Today, there is no civil war. One government controls the whole country.

We must build on this progress and prevent the forces that wish to rekindle the conflict, create more refugees and intensify the terrorist threat.

He said that we agree that the OIC can and should play a leading role in supporting the Afghan people.

He said that during the current session of the United Nations General Assembly, OIC countries need to work with other developing countries to meet the triple challenge of recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. ; the achievement of the SDGs and the existential threat of climate change.

As the recent disastrous floods in Pakistan so tragically illustrated, climate change poses an existential threat to humanity. Pakistan is affected by the global impacts of climate change. Despite our rather negligible contribution to emissions, Pakistan today is “ground zero” for the impact of climate change.

He said the OIC, which has 57 members, is the largest intergovernmental organization after the United Nations. At this inflection point in history, we face multiple challenges. But there are also new opportunities for the OIC to seize and play a major role in shaping the content and structures of the emerging era. Pakistan will work with all OIC Member States to mobilize our collective efforts towards this end.

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