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Pakistan to participate in OIC Summit on Jerusalem

Pakistan's Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi speaks with a Reuters correspondent during an interview at his office in Islamabad, Pakistan September 11, 2017. (REUTERS)
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s prime minister will participate in the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Summit on Wednesday to coordinate a response to US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Most OIC member states are expected to attend.
Shahid Khaqan Abbasi “will convey the sentiments of the people and government of Pakistan of the unequivocal support to the people of Palestine,” the Foreign Office said in a statement on Monday.
“He will stress upon the OIC for a united stance on the issue… and call upon the US Administration to review its decision.”
Sen. Raja Muhammad Zafar-ul-Haq told Arab News: “Pakistan will present its strong and clear position against this decision for the betterment of all the Muslims of the world.”
Haq, who is also secretary-general of Muslim World Congress, added: “The OIC has to perform now. All Muslim countries have pinned their hopes on this summit.”
The summit will be preceded by a meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers, which Foreign Secretary Khawaja Mohammed Asif will attend.
Religious and political parties have held protests across Pakistan against Washington’s decision.
Islamabad said the US move is a serious violation of international law and UN Security Council resolutions, and expressed concern over the implications for Middle East peace and security.
The US Embassy in Islamabad has alerted its consulates and staff to be vigilant and cautious, restricting movement until further notice to avoid any incidents as anti-American sentiment runs high.
Noman Sattar, professor of US studies at Quaid-e-Azam University, told Arab News that “while the Arab League and OIC have taken strong public positions… one can’t be too sure or hopeful” of their ability to influence Washington.