Jeddah (IINA) – The first OIC Ministerial Conference on Marriage and Family Institution (MFI) in the Muslim world underscored the need for propagating the spirit of love, peace and harmony among the younger generation so as to ensure their growth into useful people for themselves as well as for their societies, and to the rest of the world. The two-day session, concluded in Jeddah on Thursday, urged families in the Muslim world to assume their responsibilities in upbringing their children on the principles of moderation and protecting them from deviant and terrorists ideologies.
The theme of the conference was Towards an OIC approach for marriage and family institution’s empowerment and value preservation in member states. The ministers in charge of family affairs in the OIC member states as well as experts and representatives from international and regional organizations and civil society organizations working in the field of household gathered at the OIC headquarters in Jeddah to prepare the OIC draft strategy for empowerment of marriage and family institutions and preserving its values in the Muslim world. In a final communique adopted at the end of the session, the conference reaffirmed that the family is one of the key levers of sustainable development and that focusing on the family provides a strategic approach in dealing with the challenges of durable development. It highlighted the importance of religious values in preserving the family, and the importance that the Islamic Shariah attaches to human rights and to the protection of the family, as well as the parents’ prime responsibility in the proper upbringing and protection of the child, and the role of civil society institutions in supporting their efforts to ensure proper nurture for the child within a sound family environment.
The MFI conference also stressed the responsibility of the OIC member states and relevant subsidiary organs and affiliated specialized institutions in building the capacities of the family institution and preserving its values. It expressed deep concern over the threats posed to peace and stability in many of the member states by the ongoing wars, armed conflicts, occupation and terrorism, in addition to their repercussions on the stability and security of the family and society.
The delegates underscored the need to develop strategies and implement comprehensive family policies geared towards consolidating the marriage institution, empowering the family and preserving its values. The conference categorically rejected the advocates of homosexuality and those calling on the member states to recognize in their legislations the rights of such groups as minorities.
The session also called on the OIC General Secretariat to develop a general framework for cooperation and coordination among the OIC organs active in the field of women empowerment and capacity-building. It emphasized the need for taking practical steps to eliminate poverty and its impact on the families and activate their role in the achievement of economic development, along with fostering family cohesion and prioritizing the family in developmental plans. In this respect, the conference urged the member states to offer grants and micro-credits so as to enable beneficiary families to set up income-generating projects.
Earlier OIC Secretary General Yousef Al-Othaimeen told the conference that the overarching goal of the conference is to devise strategic, long-term solutions to the challenges and problems faced by families in the Muslim world, and contribute to redressing the stereotypical position given to women within the family and correcting misconceptions about marriage and family, and thus improving the status of this institution and preserve its core values.
Source: International Islamic News Agency (IINA)