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ECO’s parliaments have to confront organized Islamophobia: Qalibaf

Iran’s Majlis (Parliament) Speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf attends a virtual meeting of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Economic Cooperation Organization (PAECO) in Tehran on June 1, 2021. (Photo by ICANA)

Iran’s Parliament (Majlis) speaker has urged collective parliamentary action on the part of members of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) regional body against Islamophobia.

Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf made the remarks on Tuesday to a virtual meeting of ECO’s Parliamentary Assembly (PAECO) that was being hosted by Pakistan.

ECO, a political and economic intergovernmental body, was founded by Iran, Pakistan, and Turkey in 1985. Apart from the trio, it gathers seven other Asian and Eurasian countries, including Afghanistan and Azerbaijan.

“ECO’s parliaments can issue collective reaction to organized Islamophobic measures,” the top Iranian legislator asserted.

Such antagonistic measures target Islamic values and dignities, said Qalibaf, adding that Muslim countries had also been suffering widespread economic and developmental damage as a result of the Islamophobic attempts.

He was referring to far-reaching and heavily-funded media and misinformation campaigns led mostly by the Western countries and their regional allies aimed at attacking Islamic sanctities and stigmatizing certain Muslim countries.

The parliaments, Qalibaf added, have to provide “the victims of such sinister plots” with the required legislative support.

ECO’s economic duties

He also regretted that ECO’s achievements did not match the available potentials, saying, “The current century belongs to Asia.”

Majlis considers protecting multilateralism to be among its top priorities and backs ECO’s efforts to create a “fair and non-discriminatory international economic system,” the Iranian official said.

“As one of ECO’s founding members, the Islamic Republic will not spare any efforts to try to strengthen the connection that exists among the members and reinforce the organization’s capabilities,” Qalibaf said.

On Palestine

The official, meanwhile, pointed to the Israeli regime’s 11-day war against the Gaza Strip last month, noting how the heroic resistance on the part of the coastal enclave prompted many countries to support the territory’s struggle.

The official hailed that the confrontation finally forced the regime to accept a ceasefire last Friday.

He recalled that the Islamic Republic hosted the Parliamentary Union of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (PUIC)'s Standing Committee on Palestine last week.

“The participants,” he said, “laid emphasis on the need for supporting Palestine and trying the criminals, who are responsible for the Zionist regime’s genocide and apartheid-based attitude.”

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