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OIC in legal fantasyland over Trump, Jerusalem and Israel

By David Singer - posted Wednesday, 27 December 2017

The 57 member States of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) are living in a legal fantasyland of their own creation where non-existent principles of international law supposedly apply.

The final communique issued by the OIC following its Extraordinary Summit held in Turkey on 13 December 2017 makes their flight into legal unreality crystal-clear:

1. OIC members pledged to take joint action on the basis of international law against the statement of President Trump recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital.


Yet international law unreservedly recognises the sovereign right of each State to designate its capital and the sovereign right of other States to decide whether to recognise that State and to locate their Embassies in such capital.

The Jerusalem Embassy Act 1995 passed overwhelmingly by the United States Congress recognized and affirmed these long-established legal principles:

Each sovereign nation, under international law and custom, may designate its own capital…

… Since 1950, the city of Jerusalem has been the capital of the State of Israel.

… The United States maintains its embassy in the functioning capital of every country except in the case of our democratic friend and strategic ally, the State of Israel.

2. The OIC condemned the illegal settlement activities by Israel in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The "occupied Palestinian territories" are in fact "disputed territories" in international law where competing Jewish and Arab claims to sovereignty remain to be resolved.

No binding legal ruling exists to substantiate the OIC's mendacious claim.


There is however territory-specific legislation that negates this OIC claim – namely article 6 of the Mandate for Palestine and article 80 of the United Nations Charter.

3. The OIC declared President Trump's statement to be "null and void".

The OIC acting as judge, jury and Lord High Executioner has deigned to tell an American President he cannot act in accordance with international law.

Dismissing international law by claiming it to be "null and void" has also been adopted by the Palestine Liberation Organization - whose Charter proclaimed that two cardinal planks in international law – the Balfour Declaration and the Mandate for Palestine and all that had been based on them were:

  • "considered fraud" in 1964 (article 18); and
  • "deemed null and void" in 1968 (article 20)

The fictitious "State of Palestine" is among the 22 Arab States that are OIC members.

The Jewish-Arab conflict remains unresolved because the Arabs have never accepted the binding validity in international law of the Mandate for Palestine unanimously endorsed by all 51 then-member States of the League of Nations in 1922:

Albania, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, British India, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Italy, Japan, Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, Latvia, Liberia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Persia, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Republic of China, Romania, Siam, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Union of South Africa, United Kingdom, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

Many of these countries have chosen in 2017 to disregard their own decisions in 1922 which established the framework for two States – one Jewish, one Arab - being eventually created in Palestine.

Today sovereignty in 95% of the territory comprised in the Mandate for Palestine resides in those two States - Israel (17%) and Jordan (78%).

Resolving the Jewish-Arab conflict will become realistically attainable when the OIC:

  1. affirms that the Mandate for Palestine is legally binding in international law; and
  2. recognizes the State of Israel

Cherry-picking bits and pieces of International law or even worse – making it up and refusing to acknowledge its falsity – is a recipe for continuing chaos and disorder.

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About the Author

David Singer is an Australian Lawyer, a Foundation Member of the International Analyst Network and Convenor of Jordan is Palestine International - an organisation calling for sovereignty of the West Bank and Gaza to be allocated between Israel and Jordan as the two successor States to the Mandate for Palestine. Previous articles written by him can be found at

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Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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