First Published: 2012-08-13


Ministers recommand Syria's suspension from Islamic bloc


Iran, Algeria are against recommendation by Muslim nations’ FMs to suspend Syria from Organisation of Islamic Countries.


Middle East Online

No concrete solutions to the Syrian conflict

JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia - Foreign ministers preparing for a summit in Mecca of the Islamic Cooperation Organisation on Monday recommended the expulsion of Syria from the 57-nation bloc, its secretary general said.

Asked by reporters whether the foreign ministers had decided to call for a suspension after their meeting in the Saudi Red Sea city of Jeddah to prepare for Tuesday's summit, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu said: "Yes."

"The decision has been agreed upon based on consensus with an absolute majority" in favour of suspending Syria's membership, Ihsanoglu said.

It will be put to heads of state at their summit in Mecca on Tuesday and Wednesday for "final approval," he added.

The issue has been a bone of contention between regional rivals Iran and Saudi Arabia. Tehran is a close ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Riyadh is a leading champion of the opposition.

Sources close to the meeting said that only Iran and Algeria were against the recommendation.

"We certainly do not agree with the suspension of any OIC member," Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said after the meeting.

"The suspension of the membership does not really resolve the issue and is not in line with the OIC charter," he said. "We have to look for other ways, means and mechanisms for resolving conflicts and crises."

Salehi called for "paving the way for a meeting between the opposition and the Syrian government so they can negotiate with the help of others to reach a Syrian-Syrian solution."


Iraqi forces advancing on Mosul face stiff resistance

No Russian air strikes on Aleppo in 7 days

Thousands of Yemenis await lifting of Coalition blockade

UN receives reports of dozens of IS atrocities near Mosul

In violation of constitution, Iraq parliament votes to ban alcohol

UN envoy to Yemen presents peace proposal to Huthis

Turkey says US must extradite Gulen to avoid damaging ties

Mosul survivors recount fleeing IS 'caliphate'

Report finds Israeli forces could have avoided killings

NATO flies first surveillance mission backing anti-IS coalition

Russian FM says Mosul offensive equivalent to Moscow's Aleppo bombing

Saudi Arabia denies it imposed Yemen blockade

Syria Kurds say Turkey wants to prevent Raqa recapture

Anger at Israel national theatre show in occupied West Bank

Hundreds protest against UN 'complicity' in rebel-held Yemen capital

Turkey FM says ground operation in Iraq a possibility

Iraqi forces retake town from IS

Iran nuclear negotiator cleared of spying charges

Al-Shabaab in suicide bomb attack on AU base in Somalia

Gunmen kill two policemen in eastern Saudi Arabia

Iraqi paramilitary to block IS from fleeing Mosul for Syria

Two imams arrested in Ibiza over 'Islamic State support'

US general raises Yemen concerns with Saudi officials

At least 10 hurt in southern Turkey explosion

French FM annoys Turkey by contrasting states of emergency

UN planning for 150,000 displaced by Mosul battle

UAE jails Sudanese man for planning attacks on immigrants

Qatar in 3 days of mourning for former emir

16 civilians dead in bombardment of Syria's rebel-held Idlib

Civilians suffer in IS 'smoke war'

74 jihadists dead after IS assault on Kirkuk

Nearly 100 civilians dead in Turkey-backed Syria op

Kuwait says more work required to counter IS funding

Mosul refugees under IS fire at Syrian border

Morocco king calls for public administration reform

Israeli air force strikes Gaza

Russia not considering renewing Aleppo ceasefire

Israel minister: ‘we will completely destroy’ Gaza in next war

Mosul battle sees highest number of US air strikes yet

Palestinians free four held after visiting settlement during Sukkot

IS executes five Iraqis in western town

Baghdad denies Ankara taking part in Mosul operation

Clashes, air strikes end Aleppo ceasefire

Iraq forces press Mosul assault

UN call to extend Yemen truce falls on deaf ears