The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Wednesday (Dec 18) fired tirade on Muslim summit in Malaysia and said that such gatherings would weaken Islam.
The Kuala Lumpur summit will formally begin on Thursday morning in the Malaysian capital to deliberate upon issues faced by the Muslim world. Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Iranian President
Hassan Rouhani and Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani are the top leaders participating in the event. But in thinly veiled criticism of the four-day summit starting on Wednesday, OIC Secretary General Yousef al-Othaimeen said such gatherings would divide Muslims.
“It is not in the interest of an Islamic nation to hold summits and meetings outside the framework of the (OIC), especially at this time when the world is witnessing multiple conflicts,” Othaimeen told international media, without directly naming Malaysia. He added that “any weakening of the OIC platform is a weakening of Islam and Muslims.”
Malaysian officials say King Salman was invited to the Kuala Lumpur meeting but was not attending. In his call with Mahathir, the king insisted that issues pertaining to the Muslim world should be channelled through the OIC “in order to achieve unity”, the official Saudi Press Agency reported.
In a sign that Riyadh was unhappy about the event, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan cancelled his attendance after a recent visit to Saudi Arabia, reportedly to assuage his ally’s concerns.
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan told Mahathir on Tuesday that he would not be able to attend the summit. Khan held a telephone discussion with Mahathir “to inform of his inability to attend the summit where the Pakistani leader was expected to speak and share his thoughts on the state of affairs of the Islamic world,” according to Malaysian prime ministry.
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