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OIC to launch Syria initiative


JEDDAH, (Arab News): The 57-member Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is making international efforts to resolve the Syrian crisis following a veto by Russia and China at the UN Security Council that foiled ratification of a draft resolution supporting an Arab initiative to end the violence in Syria.

"OIC is closely following up on recent developments aimed at forming an international group of friends to the Syrian people as proposed by the French President Nicolas Sarkozy. OIC does not dismiss a role in this international initiative to support the Syrian people," said Khaled Bakheet, official OIC spokesman, during a press conference.

"The organization sent out international communications to resolve the Syrian crisis after the unsuccessful voting at the Security Council on Saturday to support the Arab initiative. At the same time, Syrian authorities refused a demand of the OIC to send envoys, claiming there was no need for external organizations."

The Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) will investigate the Syrian government's human rights violations.

"It is expected the IPHRC will investigate the violations against human rights in Syria during the first formal session of the commission to be held in Jakarta from Feb. 20 to 24," said Radwan Al-Sheikh, spokesman for cultural affairs in OIC.

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