The United Nations General Assembly has called for closer cooperation between the U.N. and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in search of promoting a just settlement of the Middle East question as also for fostering peaceful, political solutions to other conflicts.
The 193-member Assembly did so by adopting a draft resolution Cooperation between the UN and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation without a vote on Thursday evening.
Ahead of the action, an Indian delegate, with obviously the Kashmir dispute on his mind, objected to the resolution component that OIC could foster solutions to ‘other conflicts’ saying that the organization has ‘no locus standi’ to resolve disputes affecting non-member states. But he did not press for a vote.
Ambassador Bhagwant Bishnoi, India’s deputy permanent representative noted that previous resolutions had envisaged the OIC as contributing to promoting and facilitating the Middle East Peace process to achieve the objective of establishing a just and comprehensive peace in that region.
However, he said, an operative paragraph in the present resolution seeks to go beyond this role envisaged for the OIC.
According to the draft resolution introduced today, the OIC could foster solutions to other conflicts. The rationale for seeking to extend the role of the OIC in this manner is not clear, he said, adding the OIC is also not a regional organization, as understood in the context of the UN Charter.
While we do not ask for a vote, we would like to reiterate our position that the OIC has no locus standi for facilitating resolutions to any dispute outside the Middle East Peace Process or disputes that affect non-OIC member states, the Indian delegate said.
The draft resolution affirmed that the UN and the OIC share a common goal of promoting and facilitating the Middle East peace process so that the process can reach its objective of establishing a just and comprehensive peace in the Middle East and also share a common objective of fostering peaceful and political solutions to other conflicts in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and the relevant resolutions of the Security Council.
The representative of Kuwait, on behalf of the OIC, introduced the draft in the General Assembly in August.
Pakistan U.N. Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi had said in an open debate of the UN Security Council last month that the OIC has the capabilities to address and overcome challenges, including Palestine and other Middle East conflicts as well as the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.