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OIC Hopes To Open Direct Channels Of Communication With Myanmar

November 15, 2013

KUALA LUMPUR -- Secretary General of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, said that the OIC hoped to open direct channels of communication and dialogue with Myanmar.

He said that the 57-member state organisation, being the official representative of the Muslim world, is in a position to cooperate and contribute to socio-economic development programmes in Myanmar.

According to an OIC statement Ihsanoglu made the remarks during a meeting held at Myanmar's capital, Nay Pyi Taw, between an OIC delegation and Myanmar's Vice President, Dr Sai Mauk Kham, and the Vice Speaker of People's Parliament, Nanda Kyawswar on Thursday.

During the meeting, the Islamic organisation stressed on having unhindered access of humanitarian aid to all those affected, including in Rakhine State, without any discrimination.

They also stressed on the need to clarify the misperceptions and misunderstandings on both sides and to build mutual trust and interfaith community harmony.

The OIC said that the meeting, attended by seven members of parliament, including two Muslims, were positive and reflected the willingness of both sides to cooperate.

During the visit, Ihsanoglu who was accompanied by a delegation of the OIC General Secretariat and ministerial-level delegation of seven member states - Turkey, Djibouti, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Indonesia, Bangladesh and Malaysia, expressed appreciation of the recent steps taken by Myanmar towards democracy and reform.

He also emphasised the need to promote human rights, expressing concern over the violations of Rohingya and the rights of other Muslims.

According to news reports, religious and ethnic tensions have been escalating in Myanmar, three years after military rule ended, with deadly consequences. In 2012, waves of violence engulfed parts of Rakhine state, leaving nearly 200 dead and thousands displaced.

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