Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, the head of the OIC (Organisation of the Islamic Cooperation) issued a statement on Islamophobia to the recent OSCE event in Vienna. As well as its audacity in demanding restrictions on free speech in civilised countries, you have to marvel at the stunning illiteracy of it. The entire statement is written in broken English, apparently without even basic proof-reading having been done. This is the guy who wants to regulate our speech?
At the outset I would like to thank the OSCE and the ODHIR for the kind invitation to extended to me to participate in this important Meeting Due to prior commitments, I would like to express my sincere regrets for my inability to be personally present at the important meeting . I have therefore decided to sent this message to this august gathering. important Meeting.

We at the OIC are interested in pursue our ongoing cooperation on global issues including the issue of intolerance and discrimination against Muslims. The OIC has been cooperating intensively with the OSCE and the ODHIR on the issue of faith based combating intolerance and discrimination . It is important that continue the momentum of to our existing cooperation through increased interaction and consultations.

Intolerance of Islam and Muslims in the West existed in one form or the other for historical reasons. This has surfaced again in recent years and the activities of the anti-Islam elements to demonize Islam and subject Muslims to face intolerance and discrimination is on the rise. Despite the fact that the Muslim world spoke out in a loud voice in condemning the 9/11terrorist act, that they categorically rejected terrorism in all forms and manifestations, and that Muslim states have paid a heavy price for their rigid and staunch position against the terror, did not receive due recognition in the Western world. Rather, the anti-Islam and Muslim elements had their way in pursuing their agenda of hate by distorting the image of Islam and to victimize Muslims. The momentum in the anti-Islam campaign or Islamophobia was kept alive by persistent publication of the insulting material including caricatures of the holiest symbols of Muslims in the name of freedom of expression. This apart, the electronic and the social media have been handy tools to globalize the hate campaign and to provoke angry backlash from Muslims.

To counter and combat Islamophobia, the OIC undertook a multi pronged strategy to address the issue that included : (1) to establish an Observatory in the General Secretariat in Jeddah to monitor Islamophobic incidents on a daily basis and to produce monthly and annual reports that would be available in the OIC website, (2) to engage with international community to raise global awareness on the grave dangers posed by Islamophobia to international peace and security; (3) to project the correct image of Islam as a religion of moderation, compassion and tolerance; (4) to promote and strengthen effective inter-civilizational dialogue, based on mutual respect; (4) to highlight the rich Islamic culture which has contributed so much to modern world civilization, and (5) to sensitize the media of their responsibility against incitement on ground of religion or belief..

The OIC took the initiative to engage with concerned stakeholders in the Western countries including political leaders, academics, media personalities, civil society activists, professionals and international organizations both bilaterally and in larger forums. We were able to deliver our concerns effectively as we did not come up with any opposing view to undermine the gravity of the Islamophobia phenomenon. The situation at the grass roots however did not mirror the optimism to stem Islamophobia and eliminate the anti Islam tirade.

The institutionalization of Islamophobia was brought into open with the amendment of the Swiss Constitution that brought about a legal ban on construction of minarets in mosques. The impact of the Swiss amendment was felt elsewhere in Europe with an increase in hate attack on Mosques and general hostility against both indigenous and immigrant Muslim population in Europe. The rightwing extremist elements were successful in their design to establish a negative image of Muslims of being “ a threat” to so called Western civilization leading some of the European Government to impose restrictions and ban on Muslim cultural traits such as wearing veils by Muslims women and the leaders speaking out against multiculturalism. The extent and outreach of the anti-Islam diatribe of the Islamophobes on the ordinary citizens to harbor hatred of Islam and Muslims was manifest in the recent horrendous Norway Massacre by a single man consumed by hatred of Muslims and motivated by the ant-Islam campaign.

...The OIC’s initiative with the US and European Governments in drafting UN Human Rights Council Resolution 16/18 entitled “combating intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of, and discrimination, incitement to violence, and violence against persons based on religion or belief” and its unanimous adoption on March 21, 2011, broke the myth that a meeting of minds on the issue of intolerance was not possible.

...The Istanbul Ministerial Meeting held on 15th July 2011 that was co-chaired by the US Secretary of State Mrs. Hillary Clinton and myself and participated by Foreign Minister of a large number of OIC Member States and Western countries, government representatives as well as the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Baroness Catherine Ashton, lent strong support to the need for implementation of Resolution of 16/18 to combat religious and belief bases intolerance.


Arius said...

The OIC can stick its head up the you know what.

Anonymous said...

Go to hell! We'll die first! Disgusting. I lost a relative in 9/11! Who do theee paeople think they are? Do they have no perception of how arrogant and insensitive the appear to Christians and Westerners? The OIC is an absolute disgrace- Its motto seems to be- we can murder you but you must be nice to us!


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