۱۸ آذر ۱۴۰۱ |۱۵ جمادی‌الاول ۱۴۴۴ | Dec 9, 2022
Cavusoglu

Muslim bloc OIC should act as single identity to help protect rights of Muslim communities across world, Foreign Minister Cavusoglu says.

Hawzah News Agency – The Turkish foreign minister on Tuesday called for collective efforts to protect the rights of Muslims and ease the sufferings they face across the globe, including in Palestine, Kashmir, and Cyprus.

Addressing the Islamabad meeting of foreign ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Mevlut Cavusoglu touched upon a string of simmering issues ranging from Islamophobia to the plight of Uyghur Muslims and from the war in Ukraine to the Palestine conflict.

The OIC, he said, exists for a common cause, and, it is only when the Muslim bloc acts as a single identity that it helps protect the rights of subjugated Muslim communities in different parts of the world.

It is "war, terror, pain, and suffering" that come out of the seven-decade occupation of Jerusalem, Cavusoglu stated.

He also said Muslim Turks in Cyprus have been denied their fundamental rights for five decades, as well as "Muslim brothers and sisters" in Indian-administered Kashmir.

Drawing to the plight of Uyghur Muslims in China's Xinjiang province, Cavusoglu said the persecuted Muslim community should not be left alone just because "you have differences with Turkiye."

"In China, Uyghur Turks and other Muslims are having difficulties in protecting their cultural identity and rights," he said.

Citing a saying of Prophet Muhammad that calls for unity among Muslims, he said the miseries of Uyghur Muslims and Turkish Muslims in Cyprus must not be ignored just because "you have good relations with that country," a thinly veiled reference to good relations between China and some Muslim countries, including Pakistan.

"We don't want you to spoil your relations with that country. But you should use these good relations to improve the situation in which the Uyghur community is living," he maintained.

Also mentioning the recent hijab ban in some Indian states, Cavusoglu regretted that Muslim women are denied the right to cover their heads.

Islamophobia, war in Ukraine

The top Turkish diplomat said Islamophobia is on the rise in Europe.

Referring to the racist reporting about the refugees from the Middle East and Afghanistan during the ongoing war in Ukraine, Cavusoglu said Russia's war in its neighbor has revealed the double standards across the world while conflicts in Libya, Syria, and Yemen have continued for years.

"For us, blood in Kharkiv (Ukraine) and blood in Aleppo (Syria) is the same because this is what our civilization requires," he said.

The ongoing war in Europe, he went on to say, is affecting everyone. "It's a period where ethical values are under attack."

Cavusoglu urged self-criticism to solve the problems of the Muslim worldwide.

"Who is responsible for the current conditions of Muslim Ummah? Blaming others for that is very easy but it will not help. Today, we should be self-critics, and try to see how can we fix ourselves," he said.

Humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan

Speaking to Anadolu Agency after the meeting, Cavusoglu said he met several counterparts on the sidelines, including Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud.

“We had a very constructive and fruitful meeting to normalize our relations and even make our reviews better than before. We are in terms to cooperate to work together,” he said.

On the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, Cavusoglu said Turkish humanitarian organizations are already working there and Ankara has sent humanitarian aid to Afghanistan and provided financial assistance through the UN and non-governmental organizations.

“We have not recognized the Taliban administration but we advise everyone to be engaged with it,” he said.

He also said the Turkish Maarif Foundation has opened its schools and two more schools for girls are opening in Kabul soon.

“If the country (Afghanistan) collapses (again), the cost will be much more,” Cavusoglu warned.

Regarding the war in Ukraine, he said they are working to achieve a cease-fire, and Turkiye is in contact with both sides as the civilians are paying the price in war.

“Yesterday, I also had some calls with my colleagues who are participating in negotiations in Belarus,” he said, adding Turkiye will continue to work to end the ongoing war.

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