REPORT OF THE SECRETARY GENERAL
“COORDINATION AND CONSULTATION AMONG ISLAMIC STATES”
TO THE TWENTY-SIXTH SESSION OF THE ISLAMIC CONFERENCE OF FOREIGN MINISTERS
OUAGADOUGOU – BURKINA FASO, 28 JUNE – 1 JULY 1999
At the outset of their deliberation during the 6th Islamic Summit Conference held in Dakar, leaders of the Islamic world decided to incorporate in the agenda an item labeled "Enhancing coordination and consultation among Islamic countries." That summit session, which considered the issue of paramount importance, adopted resolution No. 16/6-P (IS) stressing the dire need to foster solidarity among OIC Member States based on mutual respect and commitment to the principle of non interference in the internal affairs of other countries. Subsequently, the 8th session of the Islamic Summit Conference decided to keep the issue as a permanent agenda item at all Islamic conferences.
- The same session affirmed the necessity for every Member State not to allow any movement to exploit the tolerant Islamic religion in undertaking hostile activities targeting another Member States. It also underscored the need to strengthen coordination among Member State in eliminating the phenomenon of terrorism and extremism. It called upon Member States to keep on bolstering cooperation and coordination and promote understanding amongst themselves at all levels and to observe the principles of good neighborliness. It recommended Member States to prevent the use of their territories or government bodies for inflicting harm on other Member States.
- Thus "the fostering of coordination and consultation among Islamic countries," taken up comprehensively and in a clear-cut manner has been a common denominator in the proceedings of the groups of experts, the eminent Islamic personalities and the think tank. In fact, coordination and consultation are needed and required in the political, economic, cultural, social and all other fields. More, they are of paramount importance on unilateral, bilateral and multilateral planes.
- Indeed, the Eminent Islamic Personalities meeting at OIC headquarters in Jeddah, September 6-10, 1995, highlighted the importance of coordination and consultation among Member States and the necessity for OIC Member States to deal with contemporary challenges in a style characterized by wisdom, foresight, dialogue, coordination and consultation and to resist the negative things that resulted form the deliberate mixing of religious work and the practice of terrorism and extremism, Jihad (holy struggle in the way of Allah) to liberate the homeland and efforts to counter the kind of violence carried out by elements alien to the spirit of Islam. The Group called anew for holding an international conference on terrorism to dissociate it from the people’s struggle for national liberation.
- For its part, the Think Tank, which also met at OIC headquarters in Jeddah September 1996, discussed world affairs at that time and the role of OIC Member States in promoting the interests of the Ummah (worldwide Muslim community). The meeting appreciated the role entrusted to it to deal with the various issues.
- The first and second meetings of the Group of Experts on Security and coordination among Islamic countries, held at the OIC Secretariat General in Jeddah, in 1995 and 1996 respectively, adopted recommendations and proposals all resting on solid foundations that emphasize the necessity to cement the ties of security and solidarity and improve and develop coordination and consultation among Islamic countries. At its third meeting at OIC headquarters in Jeddah as well (March 1999), the Inter-Governmental Group of Experts on the Security and Solidarity of Islamic countries recommended respect of by the tenets and values of Islamic as well as provisions of the glorious Islamic Shari’a Law which shields us against lurking dangers.
- The Group of Experts on the Rectification of the Image of Islamic in the Outside World focused at its many meetings on the falsehoods about Islam to mar its image, which led to that confusion between Islam, on the one hand, and terrorism which has become an international phenomenon triggered by its own underlying causes. The Group asserted that Muslims were firmly opposed to terrorism which they condemned in all its types and shapes, same as they resented those malicious practices aimed at spreading suspicious about Islam. The Group underpinned the importance of combining efforts and developing coordination, cooperation and consultation among Islamic countries in facing the ferocious onslaught against our tolerant religion.
- The 8th Islamic Summit and the 25th Islamic Conference of Foreign Minister (ICFM) laid stress on the importance to observe the principles of good neighborliness and, for Islamic countries, to oppose anyone trying to misuse their territories or government bodies and not to let any movement indulge in dissident activities against any state under a so-called Islamic pretext.
- The Secretary General affirms that the call of the hour is to promote coordination and consultations among Member States and to endeavor to close the Ummah’s ranks on all planes so as to face the events witnessed in today’s world and which are the forerunners of radical changes in the international situation. In fact, they have already begun in the form of considerable economic and political blocs or groupings in many areas at a time when third world countries are still facing poverty, famine, backwardness, invasion, colonization, foreign aggression, civil strife.
- likewise, the Secretary General insists on the necessity for all Muslims to defend the otherwise clean, pure and genuine image of Islam. He feels it necessary to oppose anyone resorting to violent and extremist methods by hiding behind Islam and using it as a ladder to achieve political goals and ultimately seize power, regardless of the damage done to Islam and the distortion of its radiant image. Such people foment troubles, including riots, sow the seeds of dissension and shake the stability.
- The Secretary General also underlines the importance of the principles enshrined in the OIC Charter, the Makkah Declaration, the Dakar Declaration, the Casablanca Declaration and the Tehran Declaration which constitute a solid basis for strengthening security and solidarity and an invitation to advance coordination and consultation, thus fortifying the bonds of fraternity among Islamic States.
- Furthermore, the Secretary General is appealing to Member States to keep up their efforts to wipe out the manifestation of terrorism which is non else than an overt aggression against our glorious and tolerant religion and a blatant violation of the teachings of the Holy Qu’ran, at par with Islamic values, conventions and traditions. Scoring a victory in this field would lead to more pioneer achievements, such as the success already arrived at by evolving a Code of Conduct to Combat International Terrorism.
- The Secretary General submits the present report tot he 26th ICFM for consideration and appropriate decision.