Saudi Minister: It’s in our interest to defeat terrorism

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Washington, February 4, 2016: Saudi Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir reiterated the Kingdom’s firm commitment to defeat terrorism in an op-ed published by Newsweek today, titled “The Saudis Are Fighting Terrorism, Don’t Believe Otherwise.”

The full op-ed can be read here.

“Multiple actors—each with their own motives—have targeted the kingdom, seeking to destabilize the country and terrorize the Saudi people. So it is in our national interest to defeat terrorism—and a national priority,” wrote Minister Al-Jubeir.

He continued, “It makes no sense for Saudi Arabia to support or condone those who have as their goal the destruction of Saudi Arabia. It is against our values, our faith and our national character.”

Minister Al-Jubeir stressed that Saudi Arabia is sparing no expense to combat terrorism and all its sources.

“Whether non-state actors like Al-Qaeda or the Islamic State militant group (ISIS), or state-sponsored extremism from Iran and its proxies, Saudi Arabia has, as much as any other country, a national security incentive to stop the men, the money and the mindset that foments terrorism and violent extremism,” he stated.

The foreign minister also addressed the Kingdom’s efforts to cooperate with international partners, including the UN.

“We’re ready to join ground operations in Syria”

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Defense had earlier announced that it is prepared to deploy ground forces in Syria to fight Daesh (ISIS), if the U.S.-led international coalition also deploys ground forces.

Brig. Gen. Ahmed Asseri, advisor in the Office of the Minister of Defense, made this announcement during an interview with Al Arabiya. Since 2014, Saudi Arabia has been among the coalition of nations of Operation Inherent Resolve conducting airstrikes against Daesh in Syria.

Saudi Arabia says that it has long condemned terrorism in all its forms and maintains a policy of strong international cooperation to fight terrorism around the world.

In December 2015, Saudi Arabia announced the formation of a multi-national Islamic military coalition to combat terrorism, with a joint operations center based in Riyadh.