BY Shahid Nayeem, Special Correspondent
JEDDAH: At the invitation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Chair of the 14th Islamic Summit, and the OIC Executive Committee, an extraordinary meeting of the OIC Executive Committee at the level of Permanent Representatives on the situation in Afghanistan was held at the headquarters of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) General Secretariat in Jeddah.
The meeting expressed solidarity with the people of Afghanistan and reiterated the commitment of the OIC’s Member States to help them bring peace, security, stability, and development to Afghanistan, meeting reiterated the OIC’s commitment towards Afghanistan as expressed in its resolutions adopted by the Islamic Summit and the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM), other meetings, and the Makkah Declaration issued on July 11, 2018, by the International Ulama Conference on Peace and Stability in Afghanistan. The meeting highlighted the international community’s expectations from the future leadership in Afghanistan regarding promoting national reconciliation, observance of the international conventions and agreements, and adherence to the international governing norms enshrined in the UN Charter and resolutions. The meeting underscored the necessity to protect and respect the right to life, security, and dignity of the people of Afghanistan in compliance with the tolerant Islamic principles and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).
The meeting expressed serious concern about the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan because of the increased flow of IDPs and refugees due to the current situation in the country, the impacts of Covid-19 pandemic and drought; and in this respect, called on the Member States, the Islamic financial institutions, and partners to act swiftly to provide humanitarian assistance in the areas that need it the most and urgently.
The meeting called on the Secretary-General to engage with donor financial institutions to provide necessary assistance to alleviate the suffering of the IDPs in Afghanistan and the Afghan refugees in neighboring countries and underscored the importance of the OIC’s Mission in Kabul to play a crucial role in coordinating the provision of humanitarian assistance. The meeting underscored cooperation in facilitating safe evacuation operations and underscored that civilians wishing to leave Afghanistan must be allowed to do that. The meeting underscored the necessity for inclusive dialogue among all Afghan parties, representative of the people of Afghanistan for the future of their country.
The meeting also urged all parties to work towards advancing the interests of the Afghan people, to renounce violence and urgently restore security and civil order throughout the Afghan society, and to establish lasting peace to achieve the aspirations of the Afghan people for stability, decent life, respect of their rights, and prosperity. the meeting reaffirmed the OIC’s full commitment to support the Afghan-led and owned peace process and comprehensive reconciliation to reach a comprehensive and lasting political solution and ensure the support of this process by the main neighboring countries and the international community. It affirmed that the OIC stands with Afghanistan at this critical juncture.
The meeting called upon the future Afghan leadership and the international community to ensure that Afghanistan is never again used as a platform or haven for terrorists and not allow terrorist organizations to have a foothold there.
The meeting recalled the severe suffering and hardship Afghanistan and its people went through due to protracted conflict and violence and asserted that all efforts need to be directed towards the development and the welfare of the people.
The meeting underscored the need for support by the international community to ensure that Afghanistan is assisted in its socio-economic development trajectory without interference in its internal affairs.
The meeting underscored the necessity to resolve intra-Afghan differences through peaceful means.
The meeting called for dispatching a high-level delegation from the OIC’s General Secretariat to visit the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to convey the OIC’s message towards supporting peace, stability, and national reconciliation in Afghanistan. The meeting requested the Secretary-General to follow up on the situation in Afghanistan and take all measures necessary to monitor and evaluate the developments, in coordination with members of the Executive Committee, and present a report thereon to the CFM at its next session.