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Egypt's Foreign Minister: Palestinian issue takes priority among challenges facing Islamic World

February 17, 2014 at 1:50 am

The Egyptian Foreign Minister, Mohamed Kamel Amr, has said that the Palestinian issue is one of the top challenges faced by the Islamic world on a political level.

During the opening of the Foreign Ministers Preparatory Meeting for the 12th Session for the Islamic Summit Conference in Cairo on Monday, Minister Amr said that “Egypt is honoured to host the events of the current session of the Islamic Summit Conference at a historical moment when Egyptians are striving to rebuild their new country on the foundations of justice, righteousness, freedom, and democracy after a great revolution that reclaimed Egypt’s role and status.”

He added that the Islamic Summit, which is being held under the title “The Muslim World: New Challenges and Expanding Opportunities”, highlights the challenges faced by the Muslim nation in an age where political conflict and economic challenges have increased.  He also expressed his hope that the summit would succeed in shaping a plan of action to intensify political activity and enhance economic cooperation in order to face such challenges.”

Moreover, he stressed that the Palestinian issue is one of the top challenges faced by the Islamic nation from a political standpoint, and is a cornerstone to achieving security and stability in the Middle East, as well as in the world. Therefore, it is important that the summit resolutions keep up with the rapid developments and expansion of settlements in the occupied Palestinian Territories, including East Jerusalem, where the pace of settlement expansion has increased following Palestine gaining non-member observer state status at the United Nations.

Amr also pointed out that Egypt has scheduled a special session at the summit for leaders to explore suitable options for dealing with Israeli settlement policies and halt attempts to Judaize Jerusalem and isolate it from its Palestinian surroundings.

In addition to this, he called for an end to the humanitarian tragedy suffered by the Syrian people for demanding freedom, dignity, and democracy.

He also called for the joint formulation of ideas to enhance efforts to emphasize the fact that there is no conflict between Islam and the institutions of the modern state, as well as to reject the negative image of Islam and Muslim communities and alleviate the suffering of Muslim communities in various countries as a result of the phenomenon of Islamophobia and other forms of discrimination.

The Egyptian Foreign Minister considered the summit a new opportunity to stress the priority of holding a special conference to rid the Middle East of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction as soon as possible. This would implement what member countries of the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons Treaty agreed upon during the NPT Review Conference in 2010.