Appointment of Special Envoy for Jammu and Kashmir by Organizations of Islamic Countries would help bridge the gap between India and Pakistan and address the issue of minorities in India, a top OIC official has said.
“The role of the Special Envoy is to help in bridging the gap between the two countries namely Pakistan and India,” OIC Secretary General, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu told PTI.
He was in Washington to meet US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Ihsanoglu of Turkey, who heads Jeddah-based IOC -- a grouping of 57 member Muslim countries -- said this was not for the first time that a Special Envoy for Jammu and Kashmir has been appointed.
The OIC, early this week, had announced the appointment of Abdullah Bin Adbul Rahman Al Bakr, a Saudi national and OIC’s Assistant Secretary General of Political Affairs, as the Special OIC Envoy on Jammu and Kashmir at a meeting at the UN headquarters in New York.
“This is nothing new. (It is) just a continuation of the previous Special Representative. You know there has been a decision taken years back asking OIC Secretary General to appoint Special Envoy,” Ihsanoglu said.
Ihsanoglu added that Al Bakr’s predecessor to the post of Assistant Secretary General of Political Affairs was also the ex-officio Special OIC Envoy for Jammu and Kashmir.
“So it is just a formality to continue this position,” Ihsanoglu said.
Without going into detail, Ihsanoglu said: “We recognise that there is some problem there with the Muslim minority, which we are dealing with.”
This was the mandate given to OIC by Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Summits, he said, adding: “I have to say that this is part of our activities vis-a-vis minorities in the outside OIC member countries.”