Egypt’s Islamist president on Wednesday told leaders of Islamic countries that there will not be regional peace until a Palestinian state is founded, and called on them to unite against Israel.

Speaking at an Organization of Islamic Cooperation summit in Cairo, Mohammed Morsi said that “there won’t be peace in the Arab region unless the Palestinian people receive their rights and unless the brutal assault [on them] ends and the Palestinians receive their freedom and have a separate homeland and sovereign state.”

The means of obtaining that objective, he told OIC leaders, was unified action by Muslim states against Israel.

“We must cooperate to stop Israel’s hotheaded takeover of the Palestinian territories,” he said. “The Palestinian issue is the central issue… it is the cornerstone for stability [in the Middle East]. The aspiration is to found a sovereign state whose capital is Jerusalem, and [we] are obliged to do it.”

The Egyptian president said the OIC must make the international community “stand by its obligations.”

Morsi called Israel’s eight-day air campaign against terrorist targets in the Gaza Strip last November an “ugly assault” and vowed that “Egypt will continue to aid its besieged brothers in Gaza.”

He said that the OIC must make the international community “stand by its obligations” and bring an end to settlement construction.

“It’s a stab in the heart of the peace process,” Morsi said of the West Bank settlements. “This evening, we will hold a special meeting concerning activities in the occupied territories.”