OIC condemns violence against Muslims in India

An Indian paramilitary soldier asks residents to stay indoors as they patrol a street vandalized in Tuesday's violence in New Delhi on Feb. 27, 2020. (AP)
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Updated 27 February 2020

OIC condemns violence against Muslims in India

  • The inter-governmental organization calls on Indian authorities to ensure safety of all Muslim citizens
  • Pakistan welcomes the OIC condemnation of communal violence against Indian Muslims

ISLAMABAD: The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Thursday condemned anti-Muslim violence in India, asking the administration in New Delhi to bring the extremist Hindus perpetrating such extremist acts to justice.

“OIC condemns the recent and alarming violence against Muslims in India, resulting in the death and injury of innocent people and the arson and vandalism of mosques and Muslim-owned properties. It expresses its sincere condolences to the families of the victims of these heinous acts,” the OIC said in a Twitter post while calling on the Indian government to protect Muslim minorities across the country.

“The OIC calls on Indian authorities to bring the instigators and perpetrators of these acts of anti-Muslim violence to justice and to ensure the safety and security of all its Muslim citizens and the protection of Islamic holy places across the country,” said the tweet.

India has witnessed intense violence since the country passed the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) last December which was widely viewed as anti-Muslim. More than 30 people have been killed so far in the deadliest violence the Indian capital, New Delhi, has experienced in several decades.

“We welcome the response and concern shown by the OIC on communal violence against Muslims in India,” Pakistan’s foreign office spokesperson Aisha Farooqui told Arab News on Thursday.

Pakistan’s Foreign Office Spokesperson Aisha Farooqui is addressing a weekly media briefing in Islamabad on Feb. 27, 2020. (AN Photo)

She demanded further deliberations on the matter by the biggest inter-governmental body of Muslim countries.

“The OIC should take up this issue and talk about it since more than 30 people have died and over 200 have been injured in the violence. This is the worst form of communal violence and Islamophobia in India. This is a matter of great concern for us and should also be a matter of grave concern for the entire Muslim world,” Farooqui said, acknowledging that the OIC had played a consistent, clear and positive role on Kashmir through its contact group for the last many decades.

“Pakistan is very concerned about the reports of vandalizing Muslim community’s homes and shops, and the desecration of their mosques. Our leadership and the international community at large have also expressed concern over the situation,” Farooqui said.

She said the people of Kashmir had suffered state oppression for decades at the hands of Indian authorities, and now that violence had also reached New Delhi.

“What is happening in India, especially during the last two weeks, is a continuation of an extremist and majoritarian mindset that proposes discriminatory policies toward minorities. This is the pattern we have witnessed in India for the last few years. The state oppression through which Kashmiris were suffering in the occupied territory has now found its way into the Indian capital,” Farooqui said.

Pakistan plans to raise $1.5bln in Eurobonds, officials say

Updated 29 May 2020

Pakistan plans to raise $1.5bln in Eurobonds, officials say

  • The country’s central bank recently cut its policy rate drastically to cope with the coronavirus
  • The Pakistani economy is likely to contract -1% to -1.5% in the current financial year, according to the IMF

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan plans to raise $1.5 billion through Eurobonds to bridge a balance of payments gap for the financial year beginning July 1, two government officials said on Friday.
With the country’s fiscal deficit likely to rise as high as 9.4% and a shortfall in revenues due to COVID-19 economic losses, Pakistan desperately needs funds to stave off balance of payment pressure caused by dwindling foreign reserves and a current account deficit.
“Pakistan plans to launch these bonds in next fiscal year. Exact dates and amount can’t be confirmed at the moment as it depends on market situation,” an official at the finance ministry told Reuters.
Another official at Pakistan’s ministry of economic affairs said Pakistan wants to raise an estimate $1.5 billion. Both officials requested anonymity.
The Pakistani economy is likely to contract -1% to -1.5% in the current financial year, which ends in just over a month, on June 30, according to the International Monetary Fund and the country’s finance ministry.
The plan is subject to approval from Pakistan’s cabinet. Its terms would be made public at launching.
In the current financial year, Pakistan attracted over $4.4 billion in carry-trade funds through government financial instruments, including treasury bills and bonds, offering rates as high as 13%.
Pakistan’s central bank recently cut its policy rate drastically to cope with the coronavirus. Over $4.1 billion has flowed out of government instruments to date as the effects of the global pandemic hit markets.
Pakistan is also expecting more multilateral and bilateral external inflows in next financial year, including the IMF, as well as debt relief from G20 countries.
Moody’s has placed Pakistan’s local and foreign currency long-term issuer B3 ratings under review for downgrade, citing a potential default on private sector debt.