Brunei stands firm with Palestinian people

HIS Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam called the situation in Palestine an outstanding core issue which calls for a continued unity towards the fulfilment of its people’s legitimate goals.

His Majesty said this in a titah at the 12th Session of the Islamic Summit Conference held at the Fairmont Heliopolis and Tower, Cairo, Arab Republic of Egypt, Wednesday.

In this regard, His Majesty commended Egyptian President Dr Mohamed Morsi’s leader-ship in mediating the latest ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.

Brunei Darussalam, said His Majesty, stands firm with the Palestinian people in their quest for an independent and sovereign state. Palestine’s admission as a United Nations non-member observer state was a historic milestone and His Majesty congratulated all Palestinians for this achievement.

His Majesty extended his congratulation to Morsi for his assumption as the Chairman of the 12th Islamic Summit Conference.

His Majesty assured full support in pursuing shared goals and objectives for the benefit of Muslim Ummah.

His Majesty also expressed his appreciation to the Republic of Senegal, which has greatly contributed to the work of the organisation during its chairmanship, particularly the adoption of the new charter.

His Majesty said that the theme for the summit was most appropriate as the OIC was confronted with many difficult problems. Politically, OIC continues to face challenges from old conflicts as well as emerging ones.

“The current economic uncertainties pose a great challenge but at the same time present greater opportunities for the Muslim world to seize. The Makkah Plan initiated by King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, is both strategic and forward-looking,” said His Majesty.

His Majesty was pleased to learn that OIC has made remarkable progress in implementing the various programmes ranging from the economic and financial sectors to humanitarian assistance and human rights.

The plan, His Majesty said, serves as a guideline for OIC to adapt to rapidly changing situations and on how OIC could seize opportunities as they arise, even beyond 2015. One aspect of the plan is the culture of learning, which is an essential part of Islam.

As such, OIC has to constantly keep abreast with the modern world by giving priority to education, science and technology in order to enhance the quality of life of the Ummah.

Similarly, through partnerships in education OIC can provide opportunities to advance human capacity. OIC can value this partnership with many foreign institutions and His Majesty was pleased to maintain scholarship offers to fellow OIC members to study in Brunei Darussalam.

Through educational cooperation, His Majesty hoped to inculcate the culture of understanding and tolerance. His Majesty valued the priority the organisation has given to promote dialogue among cultures and civilisations and was pleased to take part in such dialogues.

His Majesty also supported the aims of the Alliance of Civilisations and the Global Movement of Moderates.

All these efforts are consistent with the Makkah Plan and His Majesty welcomed the ongoing work of the secretariat in pursuing them. His Majesty also appreciated the initiatives of member states, including last year’s inauguration of the King Abdullah Centre for Dialogue in Vienna.

His Majesty said, OIC already has a plan of action and should continue to work closely together to face new challenges and take due advantage of the expanding opportunities that benefit the Ummah.

Finally, His Majesty thanked the secretary-general and members of his staff for their tireless efforts in promoting OIC cause.

His Majesty thanked the chairman and the people for the warm welcome and generous hospitality accorded to His Majesty and the Brunei delegation.

His Majesty also extended his warmest greetings to the people and Government of the Arab Republic of Egypt as well as brothers and sisters of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

Earlier, upon arrival at the opening session of the 12th Session of the Islamic Summit Conference, His Majesty was greeted and ushered to Pearl Room 2, where His Majesty was greeted by President Morsi.

Later His Majesty with heads of government, state and delegation of OIC members proceeded for a group photo session which took place at the Foyer Canyon Ballroom of Fairmont Heliopolis and Tower.

The opening session of the conference commenced with the recitation of verses from the Holy Quran, followed by a welcoming address by Morsi.

The session also saw the report of the Chairman of 11th Session of the Islamic Summit Conference, delivered by Macky Mall, the President of the Republic of Senegal.

It was followed by the Election of the Bureau and subsequently statements from the Arab Republic of Egypt, OIC Secretary-General as well as statements from African, Asian and the Arab groups.

His Majesty then proceeded with other leaders for a luncheon.

Accompanying His Majesty were Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdul Rahman bin Haji Ibrahim, Minister of Finance II at the Prime Minister’s Office and Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Dewa Dato Seri Setia Lim Jock Seng, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade II. - Borneo Bulletin (8 February 2013)