UAE FM says can ‘embrace India in OIC’

ABU DHABI: The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan has hinted that the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) would accept India in the Muslim countries forum one day.

“We can embrace India in the OIC,” the UAE Foreign Minister stated, “I know we are not there yet for obvious reasons”. He was speaking in a press conference after the conclusion of the Forty-Sixth Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) of Member States of the OIC held in Abu Dhabi. Sheikh Abdullah stated that the OIC sent a very “clear and positive” message to India.

“The OIC appreciates relationship with India and looks forward to strengthen the ties with India”, he informed the media in the press conference.

The participation of India in the Muslim countries forum, he termed as “historical moment not only for the OIC but India as well”. He also lauded the speech of Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj at the plenary session of the OIC’s Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM).

“The most important change in the OIC is having India as guest of honour,” he acknowledged. But on the complaining question by an Indian journalist about the resolution on Kashmir in the moot, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan defended the resolution adopted by the OIC member states.

According to the resolution, the OIC member states reiterated that Jammu and Kashmir remained the core dispute between Pakistan and India and its resolution was indispensable for the dream of peace in South Asia.

Referring to the language written in the resolution about the Kashmir dispute, the UAE Foreign Minister clearly stated that the same language has been mentioned in the previous statements of the OIC.

Diplomatic sources informed The News that Indian delegation had tried hard to eliminate the Kashmir dispute from the OIC conference. It is also observed that Indian diplomats in Abu Dhabi conference were rigorously involved in meetings with numerous diplomats of the OIC member states and utilize the forum convincingly while Pakistan delegation remained to be secluded.

Interestingly, Indian delegation and their officials belong to ministry of external affairs not only interacted with Arab media but international media too so they could shape the opinion in the favour of India. But, unfortunately, the Pakistan delegation and officials of ministry of foreign affairs were inaccessible and unreachable to the international media.

On the other hand, the Abu Dhabi Declaration upon conclusion of 46th meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) of the OIC did not mention “Kashmir dispute” but the previous meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) that was held in Bangladesh not only reaffirmed the solidarity with the people of Jammu and Kashmir in the final communique “The Dhaka Declaration” but also passed a resolution against Indian atrocities in Indian Held Kashmir.

The 45th Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) was held in Dhaka in May 2018 in which OIC had underlined the need for stabilisation of the situation in Kashmir. The Dhaka declaration also demanded to bring to an end the sufferings of the affected people and the resultant migration and displacement of population.

Although, the Pakistan delegation, participated in the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) held in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), but was not able to succeed in including “Kashmir dispute” in the final communique “Abu Dhabi Declaration”.

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