Saudi Arabia has announced that it would lead the coalition of 34 mainly Muslim countries formed to battle terrorism with a joint operations centre to be established in Riyadh.
Deputy Crown Prince and Defence Minister Mohammed bin Salman while making the announcement at a press conference on Monday in King Salman Air Base in Riyadh said that the nations would stand united to fight the terrorist organizations. It comes amid the mounting pressure on the Arab nations to take initiatives to counter the terrorist groups including Islamic State. Besides Saudi Arabia, the countries joining in the alliance include Jordan, UAE, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Benin, Turkey, Chad, Togo, Tunisia, Djibouti, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Gabon, Guinea, Palestine, Comoros, Qatar, Kuwait, Ivory Coast, Lebanon, Libya, Maldives, Mali, Malaysia, Egypt, Morocco, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria and Yemen. Prince Salman said that ten other countries have also expressed support for the alliance and would soon be taking necessary measures in the direction. He added that there would not only be military operations about also attempts to launch media and information campaigns against Islamic State and other terrorist groups across the world. The decision by the Muslim countries on their own to fight terrorism comes amidst the military offensives in Iraq and Syria led by the West with the backing of the Arab countries against Islamic State that has been terrorizing the world with their savageries. They believe that countries like Egypt, Yemen, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan were plagued by terrorism and that it couldn’t be wiped out merely by limiting the military offensives to Iraq and Syria. The Western powers have also been constantly demanding a move by the Muslim countries on their own as military operations against the IS by the US and the European Union alone wouldn’t succeed. Along with that the double standard exhibited by the West on the matter has also put the Arab Muslim nations in a dilemma. The Western powers are not taking interest in erasing out the skepticisms surrounding the Islamic State that are still ripe and maintain transparency.
The world continues to be in panic even after Russia’s president Vladimir Putin shared intelligence data of the countries funding the Islamic State before the world leaders in the G20 summit. Not only the US and the other powers do not trust the Muslim nations, but has also been blaming them for different acts of terrorism. US had recently witnessed one of the deadliest shootings in history in which a heavily armed American couple engaged in mass shooting in Bernardino, California killing many and injuring several others. The Western media unleashed a rigorous campaign war against the Arab Muslim society tarnishing them and criticizing Saudi Arabia where the couple had stayed for a short while after the shooting. The Arab Muslim nations have now realized the double standards of the Western powers in branding the countries that joined them in fighting terrorism as those backing terrorism whenever an opportunity arises. The Western powers are trying to achieve their own political and military interests through the military offensives under the guise of countering the Islamic State. Saudi Arabia and Turkey opposed the military attacks led by Russia in Syria by citing the hidden agenda of Moscow. Along with joining the international community in battling terrorism, different measures to safeguard the citizens from the menace and resist the moves to target Islam and accuse the Muslims for acts of terrorism have also been announced. If effective steps are adopted by the alliance to resist the political as well as economic exploitations in the name of terrorism along with uprooting the menace, the world would be surely transformed for better. The first move of the coalition has been positive and its rapid progress in this direction is what is anticipated by the world.