Tensions between Iran and other Islamic countries, especially Saudi Arabia, erupted at the 13th summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) of 57 countries. The final communique, issued April 15, “deplored Iran’s interference” in the affairs of other countries and its “continued support for terrorism.” President Hassan Rouhani skipped the closing meeting, reportedly in protest. The five key resolutions are listed below, followed by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s address to the organization.

President Rohani of Iran

President Rohani of Iran

Rouhani and Saudi King Salman both attendedthe summit in Istanbul, Turkey. But they did not meet—or even greet each other. In one video, Salman appeared to snub an attempt by Rouhani to shake hands. Iran and Saudi Arabia, long-time rivals, support opposing actors in both the Syria and Yemen conflicts. Saudi Arabia’s execution of a prominent Shiite cleric prompted protestors in Tehran to attack its embassy in January. Riyadh then cut diplomatic ties with Iran. 

Rouhani’s speech at the summit on April 14 attempted to be conciliatory. “It is crystal clear that neither Saudi Arabia is regarded as Iran’s problem nor Iran is regarded as Saudi’s problem. The main issue is ignorance, prejudice and violence, which are now regarded as the main hurdle and root cause of discord in the Islamic World,” he said. But he also warned the OIC not to issue a divisive message. Rouhani lamented that the Islamic countries are spending billions on military arsenals to fight each other instead of using those resources to create jobs and boost economic growth.
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi alleged that the OIC’s decision-making process is biased against Iran. He noted that the clauses on Iran were added to the final statement during a pre-summit meeting in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. No Iranian envoys participated because Saudi Arabia would not grant them a visa, Araghchi said. In a televised interview, he said the OIC is dominated by certain countries that use “financial resources, threats, and bribery.” He added that the OIC “will definitely regret the stances it adopted against Iran and Hezbollah in future.”
30. The Conference stressed the need for the cooperative relations between Islamic States and the Islamic Republic of Iran to be based on the principle of good-neighborliness, non-interference in their domestic affairs, respect for their independence and territorial sovereignty, resolving differences by peaceful means in accordance with the OIC and the UN charters and the principles of international law, and refraining from the use or threat of force.
31. The Conference condemned the aggressions against the missions of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in Tehran and Mashhad in Iran, which constitute a flagrant violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, and international law which guarantees the inviolability of diplomatic missions.
32. The Conference rejected Iran’s inflammatory statements on the execution of judicial decisions against the perpetrators of terrorist crimes in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, considering those statements a blatant interference in the internal affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and a contravention of the United Nations Charter, the OIC Charter and of all international covenants.
33. The Conference deplored Iran’s interference in the internal affairs of the States of the region and other Member States including Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, and Somalia, and its continued support for terrorism.
105. The Conference condemned Hizbollah for conducting terrorist activities in Syria, Bahrain, Kuwait and Yemen and for supporting terrorist movements and groups undermining the security and stability of OIC Member States.
President Rouhani’s Address to the OIC
Today, we have convened with the motto of ‘Unity and Solidarity for Justice and Peace’ in the beautiful and historical city of Istanbul and it is a great opportunity to ponder the common fate of all Muslims in the world.
Some centuries ago, when the Islamic civilization was at its zenith of power, no one assumed that one day, they (Muslim) would become so weak in dealing with the western civilisation which owed Muslims very much in terms of scientific growth or the day that the Islamic civilisation which encompassed all schools of thought and tribes and had established peaceful coexistence among them, maybe no one assumed that sectarian violence and extremism would rampant among Muslims in a way that assassination of one Muslim with the hands of another Muslim to become so habitual.
The truth is that the decline of the Islamic civilization started when the big powers in the Islamic civilization fruitlessly confronted one another instead of exercising synergy and prepared the grounds for aggression of the foreigners.
And today history is repeating itself. Widespread political, economic, cultural and especially intellectual and doctrinal aggression has stiffened, but in a new form in which they have brought Islam against Islam and branch against branch, as well as extremist and takfiri groups which everyone knows where and how they have been formed and how they are being backed, killing Muslims and non-Muslims in large numbers through the most violent and cruel way possible. Pure violence has prevailed over Islamic kindness and ignorant values have replaced Islamic moral values. Regretfully, since these atrocities occur under the name of Islam, the main victims are the Islamic principles and values.
The Muslim World does not deserve to be target of insecurity, violence and organized terrorism which will bring it backwardness and lack of development. Rather, it deserves to have a significant place; and this is not possible unless we ponder our surrounding world with more concern.
Our deeds and not our claims or titles will be judged by the Muslims.
Some anti-Islam groups are rendering financial and military aid to defame Islam and this should be prevented.
When hundreds of billions of US dollars from the pocket of Islamic Ummah is spent on military arsenals, how can we talk about Islamic unity and persuade the youths to talk about blessings of Islam?
Islam has taught us that crimes under any name or title are regarded as crime and that it makes no difference it occurs in Palestine, Lahore, Beirut, Damascus, Istanbul or New York. What matters, is that we know the roots and grounds and attempt to confront it by firm resolve.
The Islamic Republic of Iran avoids any tension and instability in the region and always seeks solidarity and unity among Islamic Ummah. Iran is to help other countries to resolve their disputes through negotiations under a constructive atmosphere.
Honourable Leaders of the Islamic Countries;
It is crystal clear that neither Saudi Arabia is regarded as Iran’s problem nor Iran is regarded as Saudi’s problem, the main issue is ignorance, prejudice and violence which are now regarded as main hurdle and root cause of discords in the Islamic World.
The Islamic Republic of Iran has always backed Muslim countries and Muslims against aggressions, threats, occupation and terrorism.
The day Saddam invaded Kuwait, it was Iran that condemned the move before others and sheltered Kuwaiti and Iraqi refugees.
When takfiri terrorists approached the gates of Baghdad and Irbil, it was Iran that helped Iraqi nation and government against their savage atrocities.
When Damascus was on the verge of occupation and annihilation, it was Iran that stood by Syrian people.
When Gaza was under attack by the Zionists, Iran and Hizbullah stood by Palestinian nation the same as they backed Lebanese nation.
If one day terrorists want to attack any Islamic states or religious place, and in case we are requested to confront them, Iran will never hesitate.
Ladies and Gentlemen;
No divisive message should be sent from the OIC Summit which has been held with the name of unity; and any divisive measure is definitely invalid in that it does not accompany the consensus of this organisation and the Islamic Ummah and is in contrast with its founding philosophy.
It is our duty to seriously deal with any violence, extremism by resorting to the Holy Quran, Islamic World should be an exemplary model for a moderate society.
I appreciate your attention. Peace, mercy and blessings of God be upon you all.
Original Article by Iran Primer – Read the original article here
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