A Saudi vow to protect regional security and stability
Saudi Arabia would indeed welcome any positive international cooperation in addressing the conflicts of the Middle East region
In his speech to the Shoura Council, King Salman addressed the major political challenges that are a threat to Saudi Arabia, the Arab and Islamic nations and the global community. The priority remains the defeat of terrorism, the establishment of an independent State of Palestine, the launch of a political transition in Syria and ensuring the unity of the Syrian territories, the security of Yemen and restoring Yemeni legitimacy and stability as well as securing the entire region’s stability and territorial integrity.
The King reiterated the Kingdom’s determination to fight terrorists and to drain their resources. He firmly declared the Kingdom’s will to coordinate with Muslim and peace-loving countries and international organizations to combat terrorism and maintain global peace and security. He highlighted the Kingdom’s role in establishing the Islamic Military Alliance and the joint operations center in Riyadh to coordinate military operations to combat terrorists wherever they may be. He said the Saudi government will continue to firmly combat deviant ideologies that blatantly distort Islamic teachings to promote a selfish agenda.
King Salman also warned against those who wish to tamper with the Kingdom’s security and stability. He stated that terrorism is a global threat that has no religion or homeland and reiterated that the Kingdom has exerted great efforts to pursue terrorists, prosecute them and dismantle their networks and cells and has managed to successfully foil many of their evil plans.
The King firmly stated that the Kingdom will continue to support all efforts to confront the challenges that are threatening the Arab and Muslim nations. The legitimate rights of the Palestinian people and establishing their independent state with Jerusalem as its capital is an endeavor long sought by the Kingdom. Saudi Arabia condemns the recent Israeli criminal violations, notably the escalation and irresponsible actions of killing unarmed, innocent people, including women and children. The King stated that the storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque, violating its sanctity and targeting worshipers should be halted and that the continuing Israeli settlement construction works must be suspended and the old ones removed. He called upon the international community to shoulder its responsibilities and take the necessary measures to protect the Palestinian people against Israeli aggressive practices that continue to provoke all Arab and Muslim states.
Saudi Arabia would indeed welcome any positive international cooperation in addressing the conflicts of the Middle East regionSamar Fatany
King Salman warned against the threat involving the security of Yemen and its people which also threatens the region’s stability and territorial integrity. He stressed the Kingdom’s determination to restore Yemeni legitimacy and stability and ward off the threats posed by terrorist groups and their regional supporters.
The King also expressed Saudi Arabia’s keenness to achieve security, stability and justice in Syria and highlighted its role in bringing together all Syrian opposition factions to find a political solution ensuring the unity of the Syrian territories in accordance with the resolutions of the Geneva I Conference. He stated that the Kingdom will continue to seek a political solution that will enable the Syrian people to establish a transitional government composed of moderate opposition forces that guarantee the unity of Syrians and the departure of foreign troops and terrorist organizations.
King Salman was very clear in defining all the challenges of the Kingdom and the whole region and stressed the keenness of the Kingdom to work together with peace-loving countries and international organizations to address the major challenges that are threatening the world.
The Middle East region remains in crisis and the challenges are overwhelming. A more positive global cooperation is very critical at this stage to address the growing regional and global threats. The current policies and the confrontational attitudes between all elements involved in the Middle East conflict have ruined all prospects for peace. Unless we eliminate the atmosphere of distrust and conflict, there can be no peace and the terrorist threat will continue to destroy our peaceful world.
Federica Mogherini the EU’s High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy got it right when she said: “Our positive common agenda is us coming together. We cannot and must not fear each other. It’s not the ‘other’ but ‘the fear of the other’ that can destroy our region.” She echoed these genuine words of wisdom and goodwill during a gala dinner that was held during the Mediterranean Dialogue Forum in Rome on Dec. 11.
Mogherini called for “new regional architectures” that would include a wider Middle East of the Gulf, the Horn of Africa, the Sahel and the Euro-Mediterranean area. She said: “We are linked, we share an interest in peace and security.”
She concluded her remarks by stressing the need for the integration of the whole Mediterranean Region to usher in peace and development, as it did for Europe. Diplomacy, dialogue and cooperation are possible and they can bring positive results.
Saudi Arabia would indeed welcome any positive international cooperation in addressing the conflicts of the Middle East region. Let us begin by addressing the humanitarian issues of the Palestinians and the Syrian refugees that require immediate attention. The despair and the injustice inflicted upon the innocent because of biased policies and prejudices must be addressed along with a new action plan to counter ISIS and other terrorist hate propaganda.
This article was first published in the Saudi Gazette on Dec. 26, 2015.
Samar Fatany is a Chief Broadcaster in the English section at Jeddah Broadcasting Station. Over the past 28 years, she has introduced many news, cultural, and religious programs and has conducted several interviews with official delegations and prominent political personalities visiting the kingdom. Fatany has made significant contributions in the fields of public relations and social awareness in Saudi Arabia and has been involved in activities aiming at fighting extremism and enhancing women’s role in serving society. She has published three books: “Saudi Perceptions & Western Misconceptions,” “Saudi Women towards a new era” and “Saudi Challenges & Reforms.”