OIC, GCC to mull over Kashmir, regional, global issues in NY


Riyadh—Top regional players and organizations, including the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), will meet separately on the sidelines of the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York around September 22, 2016.
The meetings will focus on key regional and international issues, including Yemen and Syria, which have been hampering all efforts to ensure peace and security in the Middle East.
Iyad Madani, OIC secretary-general, is leading a high-level delegation to the UNGA. “During the period of Sept. 19-23, the OIC will hold at the UN headquarters in New York its meeting of the Committee on Palestine and the OIC Annual Coordination Meeting, which will discuss issues on the current UNGA agenda,” said an OIC statement.
The OIC will also have its contact group meetings on Kashmir, Sierra Leone, the aggression of Armenia on Azerbaijan, Mali, Rohingya, Bosnia, Yemen and Somalia.
On the sidelines of the UNGA, Madani is also expected to hold several bilateral meetings with dignitaries and heads of delegations that will primarily focus on issues confronting the OIC member states. The OIC Contact Group Meeting on Jammu and Kashmir would translate the solidarity and support of the OIC member states into “practical and effective measures in order to help the people of Kashmir.”
Apart from the meetings of the OIC and GCC, the UNGA meeting will also focus on the Palestinian cause, the situations in Yemen and Syria, refugees, the total elimination of weapons of mass destruction and human rights. The GCC ministerial meeting, on the sidelines of the UNGA, will discuss regional issues, while they will coordinate their stances with world leaders.
The GCC ministers will also take part in the ministerial meeting of the Arab Group of Arab League and the OIC. They will meet with a number of their counterparts from brotherly and friendly countries, and senior UN officials, on the sidelines of UNGA session.
The GCC’s participation in the UNGA reflects its belief “in the pivotal role of the UN in promoting global security and peace”, said Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed, Bahraini minister of foreign affairs, in Manama on Sunday.
The minister expressed his hope that the UNGA session would have outcomes that enhance joint international action, and contribute to resolving crises around the world. A meeting of the donor countries for Syria as well as another major Arab-African meeting will also be held on the sidelines of the UNGA. The refugee problem will also be on the agenda of the meetings of the regional bodies as well as on UNGA.—Agencies