The Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Dr. Yousef A. Al-Othaimeen, stated that the OIC General Secretariat is currently considering with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) the establishment of an endowment fund to support Palestinian refugees.
In his statement at the extraordinary ministerial conference in support of Palestine refugees held in Rome and sponsored by the Hash mite Kingdom of Jordan, the Arab Republic of Egypt and Sweden, Al-Othaimeen said that a feasibility study was carried out in implementation of the resolution of OIC Member States’ foreign ministers on the proposal to establish a permanent investment waqffund to support Palestinian refugees, as a way to encourage Member States to make contributions to refugees at this critical stage.
The Secretary-General added that the conference comes amid a severe financial crisis facing the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), which takes a tremendous toll on millions of Palestinians. He also expressed serious concern about the recurrent financial deficit, which threatens to reduce the basic services provided to Palestinian refugees and prevent millions of them from having access to education, healthcare and other vital services.
Al-Othaimeen also noted that the Conference provides a valuable opportunity for the international community to support Palestinian refugees and ensure that their growing needs are given adequate attention.
The Secretary General reiterated the Organization’s firm support for the Palestinian people in the exercise of their right of return, in accordance with relevant international legitimacy resolutions, in particular UN General Assembly Resolution 194. He called on the international community to fulfill its historical, political, legal and humanitarian responsibilities in order to find a just and lasting solution to the issue of Palestinian refugees.
The OIC Secretary General had met with the Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority, Mr. Rami Al-Hamdallah, and congratulated him on his safety after his motorcade was bombed during the visit Al-Hamdallah’sdelegation of to the Gaza Strip.
Al-Othaimeen also met with the Secretary General of the League of Arab States, Mr. Ahmed Abul-Gheit. The two parties discussed bilateral relations, cooperation between their respective organizations and issues of the Arab region.
The Secretary General also met with H.E. Dr. Maitha Al Shamsi, Minister of State of the United Arab Emirates, and H.E. Khalid Sulaiman Al-Jarallah, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kuwait, and discussed with them bilateral relations and issues of mutual interest.—PR