ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi in a telephone conversation with his Indonesian Counterpart Ms. Retno Marsudi discussed the importance of stronger cooperation amongst members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to combat Islamophobia.
During the conversation, the Foreign Minister stressed that Pakistan’s efforts were aimed at creating awareness and building greater understanding for the promotion of inter-faith harmony and mutual respect.
The foreign minister thanked Indonesia for supporting the unanimous adoption of the Pakistan-sponsored resolution at the 47th OIC Council of Foreign Ministers meeting in Niamey last November, which declared 15th March as an International Day to Combat Islamophobia.
Shah Mahmood Qureshi sought continued collaboration between the two sides in New York for the smooth adoption of a resolution by the UN General Assembly in that regard.
The foreign minister emphasized that disrespect towards revered Islamic personalities hurts the sensibilities of more than 1.5 billion Muslims around the world. He noted that such actions are not covered under legitimate expressions of the right to freedom of opinion, which carries certain responsibilities under international human rights law.
The foreign minister highlighted that Muslims unequivocally condemn all acts of violence or incitement to violence on the basis of religion or belief, and these notions must be respected by all.
In addition, he called upon the OIC to work together for making the international community understand the deep-rooted love and devotion of all Muslims for the Holy Prophet (PBUH) and the Holy Quran.
The foreign minister underscored that a global dialogue amongst civilizations, under the ambit of the United Nations, was required to promote inter-faith harmony, tolerance, and peaceful co-existence.