Terrorism, crime ‘has no religion’ as it targets whole world, Saudi minister tells G-20 Summit

:: Saudi Arabia has reaffirmed its stance against terrorism, telling the Group of 20 summit (G-20) on Saturday that it had no religion, but instead was a “crime that targeted the entire world.”

Condemning terrorism in all forms, the Saudi delegation added that it did not differentiate between religions and ethnic groups, and that it posed “one of the most serious threats to world peace and security.”

Representatives of the Kingdom said the responsibility of combating terrorism and extremism, lay with the entire international community, as did the promotion of moderation, cooperation and coordination between countries.

The Kingdom’s delegation, headed by Ibrahim Al-Assaf, minister of state and Cabinet member, said there was a “need to combat and prevent all sources and means of funding terrorism.”

This includes the need to work with all parties to “combat the use of the Internet and social media for terrorist or criminal purposes, including their use in recruitment and propaganda,” he said.

Speaking at the two-day G-20 Summit, entitled “Toward Building a Continuing World,” Al-Assaf said it was important to ensure strict financial measures were enforced and money laundering was combatted

He said training and job creation were essential to help deter young people from the influence of extremism.

“Unfortunately, Saudi Arabia has been the target of terrorist organizations and countries that support terrorism for more than 20 years and have been threatened by direct, indirect and multiple-source terrorism,” Al-Assaf said.

“The last of these has been the death of two security officers and the injury of more than a dozen of their colleagues in the last 48 hours in the eastern region of our country.”

The minister added that the Kingdom was leading the fight “in all its forms and manifestations” as it coordinated with the international community to combat terrorism by draining its fundingand taking military measures to fight extremism.

Al-Assaf added: “The Kingdom affirms before the G-20: Terrorism has no religion, a crime that targets the world as a first and foremost.”

He said the Kingdom had introduced laws criminalizing the funding and inciteent of terrorism, as well as the enforcing of travel bans to conflict areas.

Al-Assaf said Saudi Arabia was actively involved in the international coalition’s fight against Daesh. And he added that it was the Kingdom that had formed the Islamic Alliance for Combating Terrorism (IACT).

He said the Kingdom was working in partnership with the US Treasury, sharing information on countries and organizations, in the ongoing effort to fight extremist groups.

Al-Assaf added: “To promote the values of moderation and fight extremist ideology, the Kingdom has launched the Global Center for the Fight against Extremist Thought with the participation of US President Donald Trump and the leaders of countries participating in the Arab-American-Islamic Summit, recently held in Riyadh.”

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