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Organisation of Islamic Cooperation calls for UN peace keeping force in Syria

At the 13th September emergency meeting of 57 representatives of Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) nations, the world’s second largest inter-governmental organisation called for a multi-dimensional UN Peace operation in Syria and an OIC framework on refugees to alleviate the Muslim world’s refugee problems.

An Emergency Meeting of the Executive Committee of the OIC convened to discuss the humanitarian crisis in Syria on 13th September 2015 at the General Secretariat in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The meeting was attended by official representatives from all 57 OIC Member State nations from across the Islamic world.

Key OIC recommendations included:

  • For the UN Security Council to create a multi-dimensional UN peace-keeping operation in Syria as a way of addressing the root cause of the refugee crisis -a lack of security and stability in Syria.

  • For OIC Member States to consider adopting a specific OIC framework on refugees to enhance cooperation between Member States in alleviating the Muslim world’s refugee crisis.

  • For all nations, particularly OIC Member States, to receive Syrian refugees as a mark of Islamic compassion and solidarity. The meeting commended the generosity of Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, and Egypt for hosting Syrian refugees in spite of limited resources and capacity. Over seven million Syrian refugees are to date hosted by OIC Member States.

  • For OIC member states that are non-signatories to the 1951 UN Convention on Refugees to join. Currently over half of OIC Member States are non-signatories, despite many hosting millions of refugees.

  • For OIC Member States to channel some of their humanitarian aid through the OIC to strengthen joint Islamic action.

  • For all countries to refrain from extending military support to the Assad regime.

  • For all Member States and the international community to enhance their contributions to the countries neighbouring Syria that have borne the greatest weight of refuges based on the principle of equitable burden-sharing.

  • The OIC called for the convening, as a matter of urgency, of a meeting of Ministers from OIC member states to discuss and adopt a plan of action on refugee challenges within OIC Member States.

The OIC also condemned the sustained massacres and violence by the Assad regime against its own people, and by other extremist groups, especially Daesh, leading to the displacement and forced departure of hundreds of thousands.

The OIC Secretary General, Iyad Ameen Madani said, “the Syrian refugee crisis is not just a Middle Eastern problem, a regional or international problem, it is a global problem. It is therefore imperative that the UN take proactive steps to address the instability and insecurity within Syria that has caused this exodus. A multi-dimensional UN peace-keeping operation in Syria is one such measure that could help provide this much-needed stability.”

He added “There is a responsibility upon the international community, not least OIC member states, to share the burden of alleviating the Syrian refugee crisis. At the moment that burden is placed disproportionately upon the neighbouring countries”.


  • The OIC was founded in 1969 and is the second largest inter-governmental organisation in the world with 57 sovereign member states from across the Islamic world

  • The organisation is “the collective voice of the Muslim world and works to "safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony"

  • The OIC has actively represented causes of importance to the worlds 1.5 billion Muslims

  • The OIC is composed three organs:

  • Islamic Summit - the supreme authority of the Organization composed of Kings and Heads of State and which convenes every three years;

  • The Council of Foreign Ministers which meets annually for the implementation of general polic

  • General Secretariat, the OIC’s executive organ, entrusted with the implementation of the decisions of the two preceding bodies

  • Bodies that form part of the OIC include:

  • The Islamic Development Bank (IDB), set up by OIC Finance Ministers in 1973. IDB tripled its authorized capital to $150 billion to better serve Muslims in member and non-member countries in 2013

  • Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) established by the OIC in 1979.

  • On 27 June 2007, the-United States President George W. Bush established an official US envoy to the OIC to “listen to and learn from representatives from Muslim states, and will share with them America's views and values."

  • The OIC has permanent delegations to the United Nations and the European Union.

  • Mr. Iyad Ameen Madani is the 10th Secretary General who assumed the office in January 2014. His appointment was officially announced after the 12th Summit of the OIC in Cairo on 8 February 2013 and his term was effective from January 2014. He is former the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s former Information Minister and former editor-in-chief of Saudi Gazette.

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