World Bulletin / News Desk
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) held an emergency meeting on Thursday to discuss the implications of an alleged Oct. 27 missile attack by Yemen’s Shia Houthi group on the Saudi city of Mecca.
Held in Mecca, Thursday’s meeting was attended by several foreign ministers from OIC member states.
"Those who don’t respect the sanctity of the holy land will not respect the sanctity of any country," Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Nizar Madani declared at the meeting.
"We say to those who might harm the sacred mosque [Mecca’s Masjid al-Haram] that Allah will protect it," he asserted.
"The kingdom will not relent in its defense of the two sacred mosques [Mecca’s Masjid al-Haram and Medina’s Masjid al-Nabawi]," Madani added.
Late last month, a Saudi-led coalition -- established last year to fight the Houthis in Yemen -- announced it had intercepted a "ballistic missile" fired at Mecca from Yemeni territory.
While the Saudi-led coalition accused the Houthis of firing the missile, the Shia group has strenuously denied having done so.
For both Sunni and Shia Muslims, Mecca represents the world’s holiest site.
Thursday’s OIC meeting was convened based on recommendations issued by the OIC’s executive committee, which met in Jeddah on Nov. 5.
Thursday’s meeting also saw the election of Yusuf Bin Ahmed al-Othaimeen, a former Saudi minister of social affairs, as the OIC’s new secretary-general.
Al-Othaimeen replaces Madani, who officially resigned from the post late last month, reportedly for "health reasons".