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OIC envoy for Myanmar in US to mobilize support for Rohingya issue

OIC Special Envoy for Myanmar Dr. Albar

March 13, 2015

New York – The Special Envoy of Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) for Myanmar Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar is currently visiting the United States for extensive meetings with officials to mobilize support for the OIC initiatives to resolve the Rohingya issue, an OIC statement reported Thursday.

The statement said Albar, the former Malaysian Foreign Minister, held a meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. The OIC office in New York has also arranged a number of bilateral meetings for Albar with UN Secretary General’s Special Advisor on Myanmar Vijay Nambiar, representatives of the Non-Violent Peace Force, Amnesty International, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), as well as meetings with Director General of Arakan Rohingya Union (ARU) Dr. Wakar Uddin, Adem Carroll of the Burma Task Force USA, and Dr. William Vendley, Secretary General of Religions for Peace.

The OIC Special Envoy is due to meet with Prof. Abu Nimer, Senior Adviser to the King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue (KAICIID), for talk about the Buddhist-Muslim dialogue event, to be hosted by Non-Governmental Organization, Humanity Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur in April, read the statement.

It added that Albar and the OIC Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ufuk Gokcen will meet with U.S. Congressman Chris Smith, the Chairman of Human Rights, and International Organizations Subcommittee of the US House Foreign Affairs.

It is worth noting that the last meeting held in New York in September 2014 by the OIC Contact Group on Rohingya, has adopted the plan of action recommended by the OIC Special Envoy for Myanmar, which called on the Myanmar government to take action against people promoting hate speech and instigating violence in the country.

The plan also called for holding inter-community and interfaith dialogue, allowing the internally displaced people to return to their homes, invest in the socio-economic development of the Rakhine region, and open up for international humanitarian assistance to access the communities affected by the ethnic violence, which broke out in 2012.

The OIC continued to call on the Myanmar government to restore the citizenship of the Rohingya Muslims, which was revoked in the 1982 Citizenship Act, and to adopt an inclusive transparent policy towards various ethnic and religious communities, including the Rohingya Muslims.

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