The 48th session of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Council of Foreign Ministers meeting in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, emphasized the centrality of the question of Palestine and Jerusalem for the Muslim world.
“We re-emphasize the centrality of the question of Palestine and Al-Quds Al-Sharif for the Muslim Ummah, reaffirming its principled and continued all-level support to the Palestinian people to regain their inalienable legitimate national rights, including their right to self-determination and the independence of the State of Palestine along the 1967 borders, with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital,” according to the communique issued at the conclusion of the two-day meeting held under the title: Partnering for Unity, Justice and Development.
“We also reaffirm our duty to protect the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes in accordance with UN General Assembly resolution 194 and to unequivocally counter any denial of these rights,” said the Islamabad Declaration.
The meeting also stressed that Jerusalem, which the OIC refers to as Al-Quds Al-Sharif, “is an integral part of the occupied Palestinian Territory of the State of Palestine.”
It called on the international community “to compel Israel, the occupying power, to desist from its colonial practices and abide by all international resolutions on the City of Al-Quds Al-Sharif, and to refrain from all measures, practices and decisions aimed at altering the character and legal status of the Holy City, including through intensification of Jewish colonial settlements therein and forcible expulsion of its Arab Palestinian inhabitants; and to desist from the desecration of Islamic Shrines, including aggression against Al-Quds Al-Sharif and call for mobilization of all efforts to confront Israeli colonial occupation and hostile takeover of the Holy City and to support the steadfastness of the Palestinian people as well as reiterate that maintaining Jerusalem’s legal status as the Capital of the State of Palestine is the only guarantee to achieving peace and security for the region.”
The Islamabad Declaration added: “We decide to take further effective measures to remove obstacles to the realization of the Palestinian people to self-determination, through ensuring protection and bringing an end to Israelis’ illegal colonial occupation and apartheid regime, and for achieving a just solution. In this regard, we decide to seek accountability measures against the occupying power, and to lend full support to and cooperation in all actions that seek accountability and are aimed at bringing an end to this colonial occupation and its apartheid regime, including at the ICJ (International Court of Justice).”