Jeddah (UNA-OIC) – The Permanent Observer Mission of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to the European Union represented the OIC General Secretariat in the OSCE’s 3rd Supplementary Human Dimension Meeting (SHDM) organized virtually on 9-10 November under the theme “Freedom of religion or belief: The role of digital technologies and civil society actors in advancing this human right for all”.
During the meeting, the OIC reiterated its rejection of any attempt seeking to link Islam with terrorism. The Organization also recalled its constant position condemning all acts of terrorism regardless of race or religion of the perpetrators.
The OIC further expressed its concern that freedom of religion or belief remains under a constant threat, in parallel with the growing trend of Islamophobia, as well as other forms of racism and discrimination.
With regard to the current tension in Europe relating to freedom of expression and freedom of religion, the OIC, while underlining its support to freedom of expression, recalled that freedom of expression is not an absolute right but is indeed subject to “special obligations and responsibilities”. It indicated that the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), in October 2018, has ruled that disparagement of Islam’s Prophet (PBUH) has absolutely nothing to do with freedom of expression.
The OIC also reaffirmed its support to UN Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution 16/18, which provides an intergovernmental policy framework for preventing and combating intolerance, discrimination, stigmatization, and incitement to violence and hatred on the ground of religion or belief.