Research Handbooks in International Law series
Edited by Ben Saul
Chapter 41: The legal response to terrorism of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is the largest Islamic intergovernmental organization, describing itself as having a membership of 57 states and treating Palestine – as many UN member states and UNESCO now do – as a sovereign state. A closed intergovernmental organization, the OIC has a number of unique characteristics which are of potential law-making relevance. One is that it was created as a response to the demise in 1924 of the last Caliph, who had at least symbolic leadership and religious functions over the Muslim ummah (the universal, ideological community of Muslim believers) following the fall of the Ottoman Empire to Allied Forces in 1918. The OIC, therefore, should be regarded as a partial institutional response seeking to bridge the resultant gap. Another closely related distinct feature is that it is founded upon a common background of Islamic values, ideals, and objectives, which is an OIC Charter requirement for membership.
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