Jun 29 2011
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Ban Ki-moon Praises UN Islamic Conference Partnership
In his message to the 38th session of the OIC meeting in Astana, Kazakhstan, 28 June 2011 delivered by Mr Jan Kubis, Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Europe, Ban Ki-moon said the non-violent revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia have inspired a movement for greater freedom throughout the region. However, we also see resistance to popular demands for democratic change, and the violent repression in several countries is a source of great concern.While each situation is distinct, Ban Ki- moon added that we must stand by core principles and values, in particular respect for fundamental human rights and freedoms, rejection of the excessive use of force, protection of civilians, and support for inclusive dialogue and meaningful reforms. We must also focus on the economic dimensions of the transition and reform processes -- in particular, expanding opportunities for young people.
The situation in Libya remains a major challenge, accrding to Ban Ki-moon who declared : "My Special Envoy is working with many partners, including the OIC and some of its members, to find a peaceful resolution of the situation and address urgent humanitarian needs."
Ban Ki- moon referred to the situation in Yemen he portrayed as "deeply worrisome, " adding he had been keeping closely abreast of the situation, including through the sending of an envoy. A peaceful and inclusive dialogue is the only way forward.
In addition to these more recent challenges, Ban Ki-moon said : "a way must be found for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations to resume as soon as possible. The realization of a two-state solution is long overdue and more urgent than ever. The OIC has an important role to play in creating an environment of trust and understanding among the parties."
On Afghanistan, thwe UN leader said the coming months "could be decisive in generating renewed momentum for an Afghan-led and Afghanistan-based political process. At the request of the Afghan High Peace Council, the UN and the OIC are backing ongoing national efforts. The last meeting of the International Contact Group on Afghanistan, which took place at the OIC Headquarters in Jeddah in March, reiterated the international commitment to assist in peace efforts. He said he looked forward to strengthening OIC-UN efforts.
Referring to Africa, Ban Ki-moon said : "the impending independence of South Sudan is a historic moment. I have proposed a new UN mission in South Sudan to help the Government build capacity, protect its people and assume its responsibilities as a new State. At the same time, we should not lose sight of the unfinished CPA issues. Popular consultations in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States, the status of Abyei, and arrangements for the North-South border must be carried forward for a peaceful transition."
Moving to Somalia, Ban Ki-moon added that "The Kampala Accord" signed on 9 June, has broken the political deadlock which has paralysed the transitional federal institutions for sometime. This progress comes at a critical juncture. The leaders of the Transitional Federal Institutions should move swiftly to implement the "Kampala Accord" and complete the outstanding tasks. I encourage the OIC to support these efforts, including through the UN and AMISOM trust funds."
Ban Ki-moon said the UN-OIC common peace efforts also require building bridges between cultures and countering extremism and polarization. I therefore welcome the active participation of the OIC in the Alliance of Civilizations initiative, a vital UN platform for intercultural dialogue and cooperation. The Islamic Conference Youth Forum for Dialogue and Cooperation is among those taking part. I warmly welcome your contributions and encourage you to expand your efforts."
"The OIC gives voice to one-fifth of the world's population. I deeply appreciate your collaboration with the UN and look forward to exploring how we can collaborate even more closely in advancing our common principles and objectives in the years to come," concluded Ban Ki-moon.-Ends-
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© Press Release 2011
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