President Ashraf Ghani returned to Kabul early Saturday morning after delivering a speech at the Extraordinary Islamic Summit Conference, Organization Of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), in Istanbul on Friday, the Presidential Palace confirmed.
Addressing delegates at the conference, Ghani condemned this week’s killing of Palestinians by Israeli troops.
“We are meeting in a time of tragic irony. Palestinian civilians are dying for demanding the right to have basic human and political rights. The irony is that the injustice inflicted upon them is repeating the pattern of discrimination and violence perpetrated against the Jewish people in 19th and first half of 20th century in Eastern and Western Europe,” said Ghani.
He said: “The specter of violence, unfortunately, haunts our lives.
“More Afghans than Palestinians have died in the past week. Yet, I felt compelled to attend this extraordinary summit to express the empathy and sympathy of my fellow citizens with the Palestinian people. Simply put, the question of Palestine is a question for the Arab world, the Muslim world and the world at large.
“Failure to address it has robbed several generations of stability and prosperity. Continual failure to address it could deprive us of the opportunity to replace the unfolding clash of civilizations with a genuine dialogue of civilizations.
He said the established rules of warfare, distinguishing between combatants and non-combatants, have given way to practicing of unrestricted warfare.
He also stated that the “scale, scope and constancy of violence has numbed the collective conscience, producing indifference in the face of massive information flow.
Ghani said: “Uncertainty regarding the future and the direction of the world has become a dominant feature of our time.
“Clearly, we do face a complex range of interrelated problems and a difficult global context. Owning the future, however, requires drawing lessons from the past and utilizing the present to overcome the past.
He went then suggested discussions need to be held and suggested that a framework for political stability through orderly change needs to be created.
He also said there was a need to create mechanisms for state-to-state cooperation among neighboring states where temptations for engaging in proxy wars and building spheres of influence have been the drivers of conflict;
Ghani also said there was a need to draw on successful examples of regional cooperation on building the capabilities of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation as a genuine platform for discussion of collective challenges and a mechanism for peace building among member states.
He said there was the need to address the question of Palestine and enduring solutions to the Israeli-Arab conflict through a sustained effort and to develop a narrative for explaining Islam as a civilization and culture to younger generations of Muslim men and women.
“We live in an open historical moment, where assumptions of the past can no longer guide us. Open moments are rare and therefore, full of opportunity and danger.
“Leadership and management make all the difference in such moments. I pray that we rise to overcome our collective challenge.
“The people of Palestine, whose suffering has brought us here, want more than our sympathy. They want our support to break the vicious circle that has robbed them of leading dignified lives. I trust that we translate our collective pain into collective action,” he said.
The summit came just days after Israeli forces killed at least 58 Palestinians in bloody clashes at the Gaza border on Monday in the deadliest day there since the 2014 war.
The Palestinian Health Ministry confirmed this week that at least 58 Palestinians died and 2,700 people wounded during protests over the Trump administration's controversial relocation of the Embassy from Tel Aviv.
Most of the dead were killed by Israeli fire near the border.