The Organization of Islamic Cooperation held its first meeting in Rabat, Morocco in 1969.
Rabat – Morocco is set to celebrate today, December 12, the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) with a ceremony under the theme: “Morocco: Modernization and Action.” The ceremony will take place at the headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccan expatriates, said a statement from the ministry.
The OIC is an international organization made up of 57 member states and serves as a “collective voice for the Muslim world,” according to the organization’s website. The aim of the group is to “safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony” on a global scale.
The celebration is an opportunity to examine Islamic common action over the past year and plan upcoming initiatives and projects. A key part of the organization’s work is promoting solidarity with the plight of the Palestinian people, an issue too close to the heart of the Moroccan state.
Morocco, a steadfast ally to the Palestinian people, renewed its commitment to the “just Palestinian cause” in November this year and condemned Israeli settlements in the West Bank.
“We stand with our Palestinian brothers in their distress and support all their rights, especially the right to establish an independent and viable state of Palestine,” said Moroccan ambassador to Cairo, Ahmed Tazi.
As chairman of the Al Quds Committee, Morocco’s King Mohammed VI, has taken on a pioneering role within the organization and led the charge in diplomatic action to defend the rights of the Palestinian people and well as action on the ground in Palestine, bringing aid through urbanization, education, health, employment and preservation of the urban and historic heritage of the holy city.
Morocco has always held a key role in the OIC and hosted the first unofficial meeting of the organization in Rabat, September 1969. The meeting led to the founding of the organization, now the second-largest intergovernmental organization after the United Nations.
The OIC’s key priorities in the OIC-2025 blueprint laid out in the 2015 Ten-Year-Action plan, include: “issues of Peace and Security, Palestine and Al-Quds, Poverty Alleviation, Counter-terrorism, Investment and Finance, Food Security, Science and Technology, Climate Change and Sustainability, Moderation, Culture and Interfaith Harmony, Empowerment of Women, Joint Islamic Humanitarian Action, Human Rights and Good Governance.”
Ministers and representatives of the troika of the Islamic Summit (Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Gambia), the ministerial troika (Bangladesh, United Arab Emirates and Niger), the OIC Secretary-General, as well as a number of diplomats representing international Islamic governments.