The ninth meeting of the Islamic Inter-Parliamentary Union (IIPU) has opened in the Iranian capital, Tehran, with representatives from nearly 50 countries in attendance.
The IIPU meeting kicked off in Tehran on Tuesday with a speech by Sudanese National Assembly Speaker Al-Fateh Ezzedin, whose country holds the rotating presidency of the Islamic organization.
Ezzedin stressed that Islam is not the religion of extremism, calling for stronger unity among Muslim nations. He also emphasized the need for the enhancement of political and economic relations between the IIPU member states.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who is attending the event as a special guest, has also addressed the opening session of the meeting.
Some 28 parliament speakers and 47 parliamentary delegations are taking part in the meeting, which has been underway in Tehran since February 14.
The Islamic Republic of Iran is to take over the rotating presidency of the union from Sudan for a year.
Fighting extremism, challenges to democracy in Islamic nations, technical and scientific cooperation as well as the issue of Palestine are the main topics on the agenda of the IIPU meeting.
The IIPU was established in 1999 based on an initiative by Iran. It seeks to strengthen parliamentary cooperation among Islamic countries in order to solve challenges facing the Islamic world.
The eighth meeting of IIPU was held in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, on January 21-22, 2013.