DRAFT FINAL COMMUNIQUE
OF THE ELEVENTH SESSION
OF THE ISLAMIC SUMMIT CONFERENCE
(SESSION OF THE ISLAMIC UMMAH
IN THE 21ST CENTURY)
DAKAR, REPUBLIC OF SENEGAL
5-6 RABI AL-AWAL 1429 H
13-14 MARCH 2008
1. In response to the kind invitation of H.E. Maitre Abdoulaye WADE, President of the Republic of Senegal, the Eleventh Session of the Islamic Summit Conference, Session of the Islamic Ummah in the 21st Century, was convened in Dakar, capital of the Republic of Senegal, on 5-6 Rabi Al-Awal 1429 H.(13-14 March 2008).
6. In his statement, H. E. Mahmud Abbas, President of the National Palestinian Authority, emphasized the worsening situation in Gaza resulting from the continuing israelis aggression against Palestinian people in the occupied territories. He expressed grave concern on the current danger facing Al-Quds as the result of the judaization of the city and the ongoing excavation under the Al Aqsa Mosque. He emphasized that there will be no final peace without resolving the issues of Al Quds and refugees and strongly rejected unilateral solutions and a State with temporary borders.
18. The Conference reaffirmed the centrality of the cause of Al-Quds Al-Sharif for the whole Islamic Ummah. It affirmed the Arab and Islamic identity of occupied East Jerusalem and the need to defend the sanctity of Islamic and Christian holy places. The Conference also reiterated its strong condemnation of Israel, the occupying power, for its persistent aggression against Islamic and Christian holy places in and around Al-Quds Al-Sharif, for its illegal excavations beneath Al-Haram Al-Sharif and Al-Aqsa Mosque, and for all such illegal and provocative measures carried by it with the intention of changing the Holy City’s legal status, demographic composition and character, in particular its illegal colonization practices, including, inter alia, its settlement activities and its construction of the Wall in and around the City in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
19. The Conference renewed its appreciation of the efforts and initiatives of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, Chairman of the Al Quds Committee, in support of the just Palestinian causes, and appreciated His Majesty's intensive contacts with influential international powers, particularly the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, to urge and prompt Israel to adhere to all relevant international resolutions. It also commended the effective role of Bayt Mal Al Quds to preserve the unique spiritual identity of Al Quds, maintain its Islamic holy sites and its civilisational, cultural and human heritage, and to support its concrete, field programmes and plans in the housing, social, educational and health areas.
20. The Conference commended the Jordanian role in preserving the Islamic holy sites and Hashemite construction and in protecting them from plans that aim at changing the status quo in East Jerusalem and safeguarding its historical and civilizational characters. It also commended the role His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein in projecting the cause of Jerusalem at international fora.
21. The Conference condemned the ongoing and intensifying Israeli military campaign against the Palestinian people by which Israel, the occupying power, continues to commit grave human rights violations and war crimes, including the killing and injuring of Palestinian civilians, including children, women and the elderly, by use of excessive, indiscriminate and lethal force, as well as the continued practice of extrajudicial executions, the wanton and widespread destruction of Palestinian homes, properties, infrastructure, agricultural lands and other sources of livelihood, and the detention and imprisonment of thousands of Palestinians, including hundreds of women and children. It also expressed grave concern over the most recent Israeli military incursions and assaults in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, particularly in the Gaza Strip, which have left in their wake hundreds of Palestinian victims and which constitute gross human rights violations and exacerbate the already-dire humanitarian conditions.
22. The Conference expressed grave concern about the deteriorating socio-economic conditions and the intensification of the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip in particular due to Israel’s continuing illegal closure, siege and blockade and other illegal measures against the Palestinian people there. It was alarmed by the rising poverty, unemployment and hunger, as well as by the declining health status among the Palestinian civilian population, including widespread malnutrition and anemia among children, due to Israel’s deliberate obstruction of access to adequate food, medical supplies and health care and reduction of fuel and electricity supplies. It determined that such collective punishment of the civilian population by Israel is tantamount to a grave breach of international humanitarian law and that the occupying power should be held accountable for such war crimes. It thus called upon the international community to pressure Israel, the occupying power, to immediately cease its siege and collective punishment of the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip by lifting the siege and opening all of Gaza’s border crossings to allow for the movement of persons and goods into and out of the Gaza Strip, including unfettered access for humanitarian aid and personnel and movement of sick persons requiring medical treatment outside of Gaza. (Palestine). The Conference emphasized the significant role played by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the Arab Republic of Egypt in order to ensure the provision of such assistance through their intensified diplomatic efforts.
23. The Conference called once again for urgent efforts by the Quartet and the entire international community, including the Security Council, to address the current political and humanitarian crisis. It also called for efforts to support the peace process, the resumed bilateral negotiations between the two sides and the full implementation of the Road Map towards ending the occupation of the Palestinian Territory that was occupied in 1967, including East Jerusalem, and thus realizing the two-State solution, based on the relevant United Nations resolutions and the terms of reference and principles of the Middle East peace process. It welcomed the revival of the peace process and took note of the recent convening of two important international conferences, held respectively at Annapolis in November 2007 and at Paris in December 2007, and called for building on the momentum of Annapolis Conference and its ensuing understandings, until a final settlement agreement is reached before the end of year 2008, and the establishment of an independent and viable Palestinian State. The Conference further called for the exertion of serious efforts by all concerned parties to achieve a just, lasting and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict as well as to the Arab-Israeli conflict as a whole. In this regard, it also reaffirmed the importance of the decisions of the Arab Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in March 2007, especially the reinvigoration of the Arab Peace Initiative adopted in Beirut, Lebanon in March 2002.
24. The Conference expressed concern about the continuing divisions between the Palestinian political factions. It reiterated the demand that the situation that exists on the ground in the Gaza Strip be restored to that which existed prior to the events of June 2007, to allow for the restoration of the legitimate authority’s role in the Gaza Strip and for the maintenance of its territorial integrity and preservation of the unity of the Palestinian people. In this connection, it stressed the need for national dialogue among Palestinians to achieve national reconciliation and restore unity in order to serve the Palestinian people’s higher national interests. It reaffirmed its full support for the Palestine Liberation Organization, the sole and legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, and the Palestinian Authority, under the leadership of President Mahmoud Abbas, and reaffirmed its support for all democratically-elected Palestinian institutions.
25. The Conference reiterated its appreciation and support for the efforts of the Arab Republic of Egypt to alleviate the Palestinian people’s suffering and to find a way out of the current humanitarian crisis. It also expressed its support for the call made by Egyptian President Mohamed Hosni Mubarak for the Palestinian factions to expeditiously end their differences and resume the national dialogue on foundations that secure Palestinian national unity and serve the Palestinian people’s higher interests in a way that is conducive to the reinstatement of the legitimate authority’s role in the Gaza Strip as soon as possible.
26. The Conference commends Sudan for hosting two thousand Palestinian refugees who had been blocked on the Iraqi-Syrian-Iraqi-Jordanian borders, thus emphasizing the spirit of the Islamic solidarity.
27. The Conference called on Israel to effect a full withdrawal from the occupied Syrian Golan up to the June 4th 1967 borders in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution No. 242/1967 and No. 338/1973; the land for peace formula; the Madrid Peace Conference terms of reference; and the Arab Peace Initiative, which was adopted by the Arab Summit held in Beirut on 28 March 2002 and reaffirmed by the Arab Summit held in Riyadh in March 2007.