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DJIBOUTI 15-17 Nov 2012 Organization of Islamic Cooperation foreign ministers meet
Political developments in Europe and Israel could keep the focus of the 39th meeting of Organization of Islamic Coope

November 15, 2012 - NULL

DJIBOUTI 15-17 Nov 2012 Organization of Islamic Cooperation foreign ministers meet
Political developments in Europe and Israel could keep the focus of the 39th meeting of Organization of Islamic Cooperation foreign ministers stuck on historic OIC issues -- Islamophobia and the Palestinians. The developments include the rise of the anti-Islamic far-right in Europe and Israel's growing talk of a strike on Iran. Such a strike could exacerbate existing conflicts while distracting attention from Palestinian rights and aspirations of statehood.

With unforeseeable consequences, hawks in Israel and the United States continue to cite the advantages of attacking Iran's nuclear facilities

DJIBOUTI 15-17 Nov 2012 Organization of Islamic Cooperation foreign ministers meet
Political developments in Europe and Israel could keep the focus of the 39th meeting of Organization of Islamic Cooperation foreign ministers stuck on historic OIC issues -- Islamophobia and the Palestinians. The developments include the rise of the anti-Islamic far-right in Europe and Israel's growing talk of a strike on Iran. Such a strike could exacerbate existing conflicts while distracting attention from Palestinian rights and aspirations of statehood.

With unforeseeable consequences, hawks in Israel and the United States continue to cite the advantages of attacking Iran's nuclear facilities quickly to end Tehran's ability to develop nuclear weapons.

OIC ministers meet regularly to assess changes in attitudes around the world to Muslims for their annual Islamophobia Observatory report. Situations like the recent Swiss ban on minarets and French anti-burka laws, as well as elections in Europe that show the rise of far-right parties, represent troubling developments. A post mortem of the French presidential and parliamentary elections in 2012, reflecting the strong showing of Marine Le Pen and her far-right Front National, await the November meeting. Le Pen's anti-immigrant platform singled out Muslim practices for criticism,

The recent report by Amnesty International confirms what OIC observations about an increase in discrimination against Muslims in several European countries. The human rights organization said in a new report that Muslims in several European countries face discrimination in hiring and daily life because of rules targeting their customs. The report particularly notes the rise in political movements that target Muslims or Muslim practices.

On Palestinian issues, the OIC can only be described as hamstrung. While Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu holds the reins of government and while the United States continues its unqualified support for Israel, it might be impossible to find anyone inside the OIC or elsewhere seeing Palestinian prospects for statehood - or anything else - improve. The OIC describes the Palestinian refugee situation as "the most protracted in the world since the late 1940s. [It remains] unresolved and [Palestinian] rights continue to be usurped unless a political settlement is concluded within the UN resolutions and the Arab Initiative, guaranteeing their legitimate rights."

The OIC has found forward movement on other refugee issues. A May conference with like-minded organizations in Ashgabat on refugees in the Muslim world resulted in a resolution to aid countries bearing the biggest burden of people fleeing conflict in their own country. An example is Pakistan, which has an overwhelming population of Afghan refugees. (WRITTEN MAY 2012)

RELATED READING:

http://www.oic-oci.org/home.asp

Iran attack decision nears, Israeli elite locks down (Reuters/Ynet 18 May 2012)
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4230878,00.html

Islamophobia Observatory (OIC)
http://www.oic-oci.org/page_detail.asp?p_id=182

OIC news
http://www.oic-oci.org/home.asp

Islam: Giving Shelter To Those Who Seek Refuge (Huffington Post 17 May 2012)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/fahad-faruqui/islam-giving-shelter-to-those-who-seek-refuge_b_1513270.html

Declaration by the Annual Coordination Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of OIC Member States on Countering Islamophobia (UN Headquarters, New York 24 September 2010)
http://www.oic-oci.org/english/conf/fm/acm2010/en/ACM-2010-DEC-English.pdf

Date written/update: 2012-11-15