Key Jeddah talks add weight to anti-IS push
Foreign ministers from the Arab Contact Group have pledged to adopt a unified stance against extremist ideology in the Arab world.
Foreign Affairs Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal presided over the crucial meeting in Jeddah on Sunday.
Five Arab countries took part in the talks that focused on pressing regional developments.
Foreign ministers Sameh Shoukry from Egypt, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al-Nahyan from the UAE, Khalid Al-Attiyah from Qatar and Ambassador Nawaf Al-Tell, adviser to the Foreign Affairs minister in Jordan attended the meeting.
Delegates expressed concern over extremist ideologies promoted by groups such as Islamic State (IS) that threaten regional stability and security.
They discussed the Syrian conflict and “challenges including the rise of terrorist extremist ideology”.
The talks focused on global geopolitical risks arising from ongoing conflicts in some Arab states and their impact on global peace and security.
The ministers agreed on “the need to seriously work to deal with these crises and challenges to preserve security and stability in Arab countries,” said a report.
The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, had also called the group Islam’s No. 1 enemy.
Egypt’s Foreign Ministry said earlier that the meeting in Jeddah would address “the growing presence in Iraq and Syria of extremists,” notably the IS.
The rise of IS meant the “search for a political solution to the Syria crisis was needed more than ever”, it said.