The anti-terror quartet (ATQ) countries — Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt — on Thursday reiterated their firm stance against terrorism in all its manifestations. In this regard, the ATQ reaffirmed that various media channels should continue to be on alert to ward off any threat to the world security and stability.
Senior information officials of the ATQ countries, Saudi Culture and Information Minister Dr. Awwad Bin Saleh Al-Awwad; Bahrain’s Minister of Information Affairs Dr. Ali Bin Muhammad Al-Rumaihi; UAE’s Minister of State and Chairman of the National Council for Information Dr. Sultan Al-Jaber; and chief of Egypt’s Supreme Council for Media Regulation Makram Mohamed Ahmed, met in Jeddah on Thursday to formulate their strategy on Qatar crisis and emphasized the importance of continuing to fight terrorism through various media channels.
The officials reviewed the latest developments regarding Qatar crisis as well as the contacts they made regionally and internationally in this regard.
Recap on crisis developments
The four countries reaffirmed the main principles announced earlier that represent the international consensus on fighting terrorism and extremism and their financing in addition to rejecting interference in the affairs of other countries.
They also confirmed and praised the huge and great role that Saudi Arabia has been playing during all these years to host millions of pilgrims from all over the world.
Rejecting the Qatari demand to internationalize the holy sites, the four countries supported Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir’s statement describing it as “an aggressive act and a declaration of war against the Kingdom.”
On the sidelines of an ATQ meeting in Manama recently, Al-Jubeir had said: “We reserve the right to respond to any party working in the field of internationalization of the holy sites.”
Egypt’s Makram Mohamed Ahmed said after the meeting that foreign ministers of the four countries should be in regular and constant touch for a consensus on a long-term strategy to combat terror.
Stance towards anti-terrorism
“The four countries will spare no effort even if the battle takes 100 years. We are confident it will not continue for 100 years because we have a friendly Qatari people. The media should refrain from disparaging them,” he said.
In a statement before the meeting, Ahmed said: The four-country bloc has a clear and specific stance toward Qatar. “Our four countries have been greatly harmed by terrorism and we are working toward expanding the resistance against terror. Our stance toward Qatar is related to its support for and funding of terrorism. It is unfortunate that this is happening among the Arab countries.”
The Egyptian official said participants in Thursday’s meeting agreed to go to the United Nations with a united stance and complete charter related to terror-funding. “The aim is to sterilize terrorism,” he said. “The stance of the four countries is final and we are capable of continuing with it for years without being harmed,” he said.
This article was first published in the Saudi Gazette on August 4, 2017.