NEW YORK: Combating the extremist ideologies that fuel terror and militant violence is one of the world’s most urgent challenges, Saudi Arabia told the UN.
In a speech to the General Assembly, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the UN, Abdallah Al-Mouallimi, highlighted the Kingdom’s resolve “to combat all terrorist crimes and violence based on religion or belief.”
Al-Mouallimi also condemned the “despicable and disgraceful terrorist act that claimed the lives of innocents” in an attack on Muslim worshippers at two mosques in New Zealand.
“Despite the pain we are suffering from this heinous crime, we stand with respect for the New Zealand people and government. Their feelings have been filled with love, sympathy and cohesion,” he said. “We also salute the Muslims of New Zealand who received these feelings with a mutual love that transcends the wounds and affirms the tolerance of Islam.”
Saudi Arabia is confronting terrorist ideology and activity at local, regional and international levels, Al-Mouallimi said.
The Kingdom is working to investigate the root causes of extremism and has developed a security strategy based on three elements — prevention, rehabilitation and care.
Al-Mouallimi urged social networking sites and platforms to reject hate speech and to ensure that publishers of extremist messages are brought to justice.
“The virtual world cannot be a haven for terrorists and fanatics,” he said. “Freedom of expression must respect all human beings.
He added: “If we want to defeat terrorism, we must all believe that any terrorist threat to any country is a threat to all our countries.
“We must go beyond the narrow view of our interests (and realize) that terrorism does not belong to race, religion or nationality, but belongs to hatred and denial of the other.”