Dubai, May 16
The 57-nation Organisation of Islamic Cooperation held an emergency meeting on Sunday over the heavy fighting between Israel and the Gaza Strip’s militant Hamas rulers, the first major move among Mideast nations still grappling with how to address the conflict.
It condemned “in the strongest terms Israel’s brutal aggression” against the Palestinian people, according to a statement issued after the meeting. The statement, carried by Saudi state media, called for an immediate halt of the attacks on civilians, saying they were “a violation of the international law and the UN resolutions”.
“The plight of the Palestinian people is the bleeding wound of the Islamic world today,” Afghan Foreign Minister Mohammad Haneef Atmar said. Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Malki of the Palestinian Authority, which administers autonomous enclaves in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, decried what he called Israel’s “cowardly attacks” at the start of the meeting. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu took a similarly hard line. — Agencies