New York, 26 January 2023 (TDI): An ambassadorial meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) nations, convened by Pakistan, condemned the recent heinous act of desecration of the Quran in Sweden and the Netherlands.

Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Munir Akram presided over the meeting as Pakistan is the current Chair of the Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers (ICFM).

In a statement, the meeting said those vile acts were recent manifestations of Islamophobia. The meeting decided to hold a special event at the United Nations in New York to commemorate the Day to Combat Islamophobia.

This will be done in accordance with the historic resolution passed by the United Nations General Assembly last year.

Remarks by Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN

Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN addressed the gathering. He said, “Through this event, the OIC countries would call for international solidarity and cooperation in combating anti-Muslim practices.

These include racial profiling, discrimination, and stigmatization of Muslims.” “The OIC will urge the UN Secretary-General to formulate an action plan, in coordination with the OIC, to halt Islamophobia.” Munir reiterated this as a follow-up to the resolution.

Also read: Malaysia denounces Quran Burning Act in Sweden

The Pakistani envoy also informed the OIC meeting that on March 8th, International Women’s Day, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will host and chair a High-Level Conference on Women in Islam in New York.

During the meeting, the OIC Member States expressed their gratitude and reiterated their strong support for Pakistan’s initiatives.

Other agenda items

The OIC meeting on Wednesday endorsed Tajikistan’s candidature for election to the UN Security Council for the term 2028-2029.

Riyad Mansour, Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the UN, briefed the OIC on recent troubling developments in Palestine. He also highlighted the violations of the Al Aqsa Mosque’s sanctity.

Holy Quran’s desecration in Netherlands & Sweden

A video on social media on Monday showed Edwin Wagensveld, a Dutch politician and leader of the Islamophobic group Pegida, tearing out pages from a copy of the Quran in The Hague.

The video then showed the politician burning the torn-out pages of the holy book in a pan. A similar incident happened last Saturday.

Rasmus Paludan, a Swedish-Danish politician, burned the Quran near the Turkish Embassy in the Swedish capital Stockholm. The incident triggered outrage both in Turkiye and among OIC countries.