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OIC hails Maldives' decision to intervene at ICJ for Rohingya

Fathmath Shaahunaz
11 March 2020, MVT 19:22
Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid delivers his statement at the 43rd Session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. PHOTO/FOREIGN MINISTRY
Fathmath Shaahunaz
11 March 2020, MVT 19:22

Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Tuesday welcomed the decision of the Maldivian government to intervene at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in support of the persecuted Rohingya people.

Pakistan welcomed Maldives' decision on behalf of the OIC while delivering the organisation's statement during the discussion on Secretary-General’s Oral Update on the Involvement of the United Nations in Myanmar. Pakistan declared that the island nation's declaration to file an intervention at the ICJ added crucial momentum to pursuing justice for the Rohingya.

OIC decided to establish the 'Ad-Hoc Ministerial Committee on Accountability for Human Rights Violations Against the Rohingya' with Gambia as it chair, during its Council of Foreign Ministers in 2018. In the next meeting held the following year, OIC adopted a unanimous resolution to file a case at the ICJ to restore human rights for the Rohingya. At the 14th Islamic Summit later the same year, the OIC Heads of States endorsed the Final Communique of the Summit, authorising Gambia to purse the case at the ICJ on behalf of the OIC, to restore basic human rights for the Rohingya and hold perpetrators accountable and bring them to justice.

Maldives' decision to file an intervention at the ICJ to facilitate Gambia's case was announced by Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulla Shahid during his address at the 43rd Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in late February.

The announcement was welcomed by Muslim states around the world, including the 57 members of the OIC as well as the Rohingya diaspora and bodies advocating for the human rights of the Rohingya, such as the Free Rohingya Coalition (FRC).