Allied against terror: Islamic coalition agree to boost military capabilities against threats

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman stands with chiefs of staff and defense ministers of the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition (IMCTC) during their meeting in Riyadh on Sunday. (SPA)
Updated 27 November 2017

Allied against terror: Islamic coalition agree to boost military capabilities against threats

RIYADH: Top defense officials from the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition (IMCTC) on Sunday agreed to boost its military capabilities to dismantle terrorist organizations.
At a high-profile conference in Riyadh, they also agreed to step up cooperation to cut off financial support to terror groups, and stressed the importance of empowering the media and investing in digital platforms to combat extremist ideology and propaganda. 
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman inaugurated the IMCTC Ministers of Defense Council’s maiden meeting on Sunday under the slogan “Allied against terrorism.”
In his keynote speech, he vowed to “pursue terrorists until they are wiped from the face of the earth.”
He said: “The greatest danger terrorism and extremism have achieved is not the killing of innocents or the spread of hatred (but) the distorting of our faith.” 
He added: “Today we began to pursue terrorism, and today we see defeats in many countries around the world, especially in Islamic countries, and we shall be those who assure its disappearance from the face of the earth.” 
The crown prince offered his condolences to Egypt, which suffered a terror attack on a mosque in North Sinai that killed 305 people.
“This is indeed a painful event, and it is a recurrent and strong reminder of the dangers of this terrorism,” he said.
Sunday’s final declaration “stressed importance of the military role in combating terrorism, enhancing security and peace in the Coalition member countries, and contributing to regional and international security and peace.”
The declaration said: “Terrorism has become deadlier than ever before, particularly in our Islamic world, which suffers from the crimes of terrorism, inflicting heavy losses in property and lives, and has shattered the dreams of broad sectors of societies trying to live in peace and tranquility.”
The defense ministers reaffirmed their determination “to work with every possible means to confront extremism and terrorism.”
They “renewed their determination to address terrorism through education and knowledge, to highlight correct Islamic concepts, and to establish the truth of moderate Islam, which is consistent with human nature and common values.” 
The defense ministers agreed to appoint IMCTC officials, including a secretary-general, while member countries will be entrusted with nominating their delegates. 
The council will meet annually and whenever necessary to follow up on the strategies, policies, plans and programs to achieve the IMCTC’s objectives.  
The ministers emphasized the importance of draining the sources of terrorist financing, and cutting off any financial support for terror operations and activities. 
“This can be achieved by coordinating efforts to combat terrorist funding and shutting down the flow permanently,” said the declaration, calling for more action to improve compliance with international standards.
Gen. Raheel Sharif, military commander of the IMCTC, said: “The greatest challenge to peace and stability in the 21st century, especially in the Islamic world, is to address the most serious phenomenon in the world: Terrorism.” 
He added that “terrorist organizations have distorted the concept of jihad in Islam” and threaten “world peace in order to achieve their destructive goals.”
Sharif said: “Our aim today is to unite and work together in order to beat and crush terrorism and its extremist ideology.”


WATCH: Car ploughs through Grand Mosque courtyard in Makkah, crashes into door

Updated 8 sec ago

WATCH: Car ploughs through Grand Mosque courtyard in Makkah, crashes into door

  • Police say driver in ‘abnormal’ condition

RIYADH: Video footage captured the dramatic moment a car was driven at high speed across the courtyard of the Grand Mosque in Makkah, before finally smashing into one of the doors on Friday night.

Saudi security authorities then arrested a man who was pulled from the car, state news agency SPA reported.

Reports suggest the car was driven at high speed on a road surrounding the southern square the Grand Mosque, also known Masjid Haramain, SPA added, quoting the official spokesman of Makkah region, Sultan Al-Dossari.

He said the incident happened at around 10:30 p.m..

 

No one was hurt in the incident the report added.

Investigators said the driver of the car was a Saudi citizen who was “in an abnormal condition.” 

The offender is being referred to the Public Prosecution office, it said.