OIC Press Release
|19 February 2001|
At a time when the adverse repercussions of the sanctions imposed on Iraq by the UN Security Council had started to gradually find their way towards a resolution through the efforts deployed by the group of States members of the Organization of the Islamic Conference during the Ninth Islamic Summit Conference, which contributed to achieving a détente in relations between the states of the region that were gradually moving towards truth and reconciliation and lifting the embargo on the Iraqi people, American and British forces took the world by surprise when they led an attack on Friday (Saturday night) February 16th, 2001, which targeted Iraqi installations and caused victims among the innocent populations.
The Organization of the Islamic Conference condemns this bombardment, which it considers a violation of the resolutions and principles of international legitimacy and of international law. In fact, this unjustified act makes it all the more difficult to find any resolution to the problem, especially in view of the fact that Iraq is preparing to enter negotiations this February 26th with Mr. Kofi ANNAN, the UN Secretary General, to seek the suspension of the sanctions imposed on it.
The Secretary General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, Dr. Abdelouahed BELKEZIZ is following with great concern the repercussions of the attack led by the American and British forces against Iraq. He invites the members of the UN Security Council to organize a comprehensive dialogue between Iraq and the United Nations in order to seek a settlement of all pending issues on sound and proper bases leading to a lifting of the sanctions on Iraq. He requests the Member States of the Organization of the Islamic Conference to initiate contacts with the United States of America and Great Britain with a view to taking all the necessary steps to guarantee the respect of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Iraq and to put an end to the use of force and to all actions undertaken outside the framework of the Security Council and the United Nations.
The Secretary General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference would like to add that the Organization remains firmly attached to resolution No. 19/9-P (IS) adopted by the Ninth Islamic Summit Conference and to all its provisions.