ISLAMABAD: Sunday proved to be a busy day for Prime Minister Imran Khan as he made a speech at a conference of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and then met on its sidelines foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, Iran and Malaysia besides secretary general of the OIC, where he stressed the need for tackling problems confronting the member states both individually as well as collectively.
During the conference it was agreed that all Muslim states would actively confront Islamophobia in all its forms and a wing similar to Pakistan’s Rehmatul-lil-Alameen (PBUH) Authority would be set up at the OIC level for the purpose.
Pakistan, Turkey and Malaysia once again announced decision to establish a joint media network.
According to information ministry, Prime Minister Khan separately met OIC Secretary General Hissien Brahim Taha, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, Iran’s Foreign Minister Dr Amir Hossein Abdollahiyan and Malaysian Foreign Minister Dato Sri Saifuddin Abdullah.
During his meeting with Iranian minister Abdollahiyan, Mr Khan highlighted fraternal relations with the neighbouring country and reaffirmed Pakistan’s commitment to further strengthening of ties.
He praised Iran’s consistent support on the issue of Kashmir, especially at the Supreme Leader level, and again invited the Iranian president to visit Islamabad.
Dr Abdollahiyan appreciated Pakistan’s decision to host the extraordinary session of the OIC and assured the prime minister of his country’s full cooperation to improve bilateral relations.
While talking to Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal, the prime minister underscored the special significance of Islamabad’s ties with Riyadh, which were based on close ties, historic links, and support at the gross-roots level.
Prince Faisal expressed the hope that the OIC conference would be instrumental in mobilising the international community to support the people of Afghanistan on humanitarian grounds. He also underscored the importance that Saudi Arabia attached to its relationship with Pakistan.
Talking to Dawn, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said Mr Khan and OIC Secretary General Taha agreed that a wing would be set up at the bloc’s level on the pattern of Pakistan’s Rehmatul-lil-Alameen Authority.
He said the body at the OIC level would comprise a group of Muftis who could provide guidelines to all Muslims on various issues. “All such scholars will gather at one place through the authority to resolve issues involved in religious debates,” he added.
The minister said that during his meetings with different delegates, the prime minister mainly discussed the crises confronting Afghanistan.
Talking to journalists, Mr Chaudhry said a joint television channel would be set up to promote media links between Pakistan, Turkey and Malaysia. Initially a Joint Digital Platform would be developed between the three countries and later it would be upgraded as a joint television channel, he added.
Published in Dawn, December 20th, 2021