OIC Foreign Ministers concluded their annual coordination meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting on Saturday, adopting an 85-point joint communiqué which laid great stress on condemning the anti-Islam video that has convulsed the Muslim world, but also took a firm position on Kashmir that reflected Pakistan’s stance. This was not only appropriate because the Kashmir issue is on the UN’s agenda, but also because it reflected the generally heightened interest in the issue, which has led not just to an appreciation of the plight of the Kashmiri people, but of the need for the issue to be resolved in the manner the OIC Foreign Ministers laid out in their communiqué, that is, in accordance with the UN resolutions on the subject. The UN resolutions deserve to be followed not just because they represent an international consensus that included India and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, but also because the solution given, a UN-supervised plebiscite to allow the people to exercise their right to self-determination, is the most workable.

The OIC Foreign Ministers paid this attention to Kashmir while also preoccupied with the anti-Islam film. The film, and other hate speech material, it was resolved, required the intervention of the UN, acting as the vehicle of the expression of the will of the world community, and the Foreign Ministers duly made this call. However, the UN has failed to resolve the Kashmir issue in the decades since it was first apprised of this issue, just as it has failed to resolve the Palestinian issue, which arose around the same time, and thus not much hope is held out that the UN will be able to do much to stem hate speech to significant effect. 

The OIC also needs to consider whether the failure to resolve these issues, as well as of the more recent foreign occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, leave the organization particularly relevant. The Muslim countries gathered together in the OIC must consider whether they are willing to put in the effort needed to make it work.