Press Trust of india

Qureshi urges OIC to ‘step up its efforts’ to resolve Kashmir issue: Pak FO

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Monday urged the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to “step up its efforts” to resolve the Kashmir issue.

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi made the remarks during a virtual meeting of the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir held “on the request of Pakistan”, the Foreign Office said.

In his address, Qureshi urged the OIC to “step up its efforts to facilitate a lasting solution to the Kashmir issue,” the FO said.

Qureshi told the media after the meeting that the group agreed to form an observation mission to know the situation in Kashmir.

The foreign ministers and representatives of Azerbaijan, Niger, Saudi Arabia and Turkey attended the meeting. This was the third meeting of the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir since August 5, 2019.

India has previously hit out at the 57-member grouping of Muslim majority nations, saying bodies like OIC should not make irresponsible statements.

The Jeddah-headquartered bloc, which is the second-largest intergovernmental body after the UN, has usually been supportive of Pakistan and often sided with Islamabad on the Kashmir issue.

Pakistan has been unsuccessfully trying to drum up international support against India for withdrawing Jammu and Kashmir’s special status on August 5 and bifurcating it into two Union territories.

India has categorically told the international community that the scrapping of Article 370 was its internal matter. It also advised Pakistan to accept the reality and stop all anti-India propaganda.

Separately, Qureshi held a telephonic conversation with Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal Al Saud to discuss matters of mutual interest, including COVID-19 pandemic, enhanced bilateral cooperation and situation in Kashmir, the FO added.

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