AMIR URGES IRAN TO EASE TENSION, YEMEN SIDES TO PEACE – ‘Unwavering resolve against terror’

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His Highness the Amir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah poses along with heads of state and government from Islamic countries during a family photo of 13th Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Summit at Istanbul Congress Center (ICC) on April 14.
His Highness the Amir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah poses along with heads of state and government from Islamic countries during a family photo of 13th Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Summit at Istanbul Congress Center (ICC) on April 14.

ISTANBUL, April 14, (Agencies): His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah on Thursday said that the battle against terrorism will be a long one but would be pursued with unwavering resolve. “Our battle against terrorism is a hard and long one, however it will be pursued with resolve,”

His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad told the opening of the two-day 13th Islamic Summit Conference of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) that kicked off in Istanbul on Thursday. “Our rejection of extremism and violence is emphatic; a priority that tops other priorities,” His Highness the Amir said, affirming that Kuwait stands alongside the international community in the combat against the global menace.

In the meantime, His Highness the Amir called for defending Islam against multiple attacks and tarnishing campaigns, noting that a lot of terrorist acts have been committed in the name of the heavenly religion. Discords have been triggered at pretext of defending Islam, acts of “annihilation have demolished our societies, killed our sons and the innocents on the face of the earth,” His Highness the Amir said in his defense of the religion that has been used by terrorists as a camouflage for their horrific acts that wreaked havoc in peaceful communities and caused wide-scale damage and destruction.

In addition, His Highness the Amir called on Islamic leaders attending the summit to join hands to correct misconceptions, clear up “image of our tolerant Sharia, so we may present to the world the bright face of this Sharia that is based on tolerance, acceptance of the others and respecting human rights.” “We, my brothers, are responsible in front of Allah and history with respect of shouldering the legitimate, humane and moralistic responsibility as stipulated by our sacred religion, our conscience and belonging to this tolerant Sharia,” His Highness the Amir stated.

Attacks
Terrorist attacks have hit several Muslim, Arab and Western states, committed by groups that claim they are Islamic, though they have nothing to do with the tolerant religion. Last year, Kuwait was targeted with a terrorist attack that hit Imam Al-Sadiq Mosque in Al-Sawaber, downtown Kuwait City, on the first day of the Holy fasting month of Ramadan, 26 June 2015, killing 26 people and wounding 227 others.

Meanwhile, His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al- Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah on Thursday reaffirmed Kuwait’s backing to Iraq’s security and stability as well national reconciliation among all Iraqis. His Highness the Amir said: “Kuwait had provided a lot of humanitarian aid; latest of which was $200 million to the (Iraqi) brothers and agreed to delay the last installment of (war) compensations, considering circumstances experienced by the brothers,” he said, referring to Kuwait’s consent to delay war compensation payment because of Iraq’s hard economic conditions. His Highness the Amir hoped that the Iraqis would pursue with success the political process, namely reforms, for the sake of serving higher national interests.

Efforts
His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al- Jaber Al-Sabah hoped that the ongoing political efforts would end the “unprecedented humanitarian catastrophe” in Syria. “We urge the strife parties not to miss the opportunity and to place their homeland’s interests above all priorities and halt the blood shedding,” His Highness the Amir said in his address to the two-day 13th Islamic Summit Conference of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) that kicked off in Istanbul on Thursday.

A new round of Syria negotiations kicked off in Geneva on Wednesday, in a bid to resolve the crisis that erupted more than five years ago, with a humanitarian disaster, seen as the worst globally. Kuwait hosted the First, Second and Third International Humanitarian Pledging Conference for Syria, over the past three years, during which the country offered a total of $1.3 billion. Pledges by participant states in the three events hit $7.7 billion.

In addition, His Highness the Amir announced during the fourth conference in London in February that Kuwait, on the official and popular levels, would provide further $300 million to support the humanitarian situation of the Syrian people. His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al- Jaber Al-Sabah on Thursday called on all Yemeni parties to find a peaceful settlement to their country’s ongoing crisis. His Highness the Amir hoped the recently declared cease-fire would pave the way for the upcoming conciliations talks due in Kuwait on April 18th.

The Kuwaiti Cabinet had wished that the talks in Kuwait would put an end to the conflict in Yemen and stop bloodshed there, urging all Yemeni rivals to abide by the truce. His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah on Thursday called on the UN Security Council (UNSC) to play its due role in maintaining international security and peace by pressuring Israel to accept peace in line with relevant UN resolutions and Arab Peace Initiative.

His Highness the Amir said Israel’s intransigence undermines international peace efforts to find a final settlement to the conflict. His Highness the Amir regretted that there is now noticeably dwindling international interest in the peace process. His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah has urged Iran to work on dispelling tension, and for establishing normal ties in the region. His Highness the Amir’s call to Iran, “a neighboring Muslim country,” came in his address to the two-day 13th Islamic Summit Conference of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) that kicked off in Istanbul. Kuwait has welcomed all efforts likely to spare the region any form of instability, His Highness the Amir said.

An evidence of this is that Kuwait had welcomed the nuclear deal between Tehran and the Western powers. As such, His Highness the Amir urged Iran to cooperate for defusing regional tension, and for establishing normal relations based on international laws and covenants, respect of states’ sovereignty and non-intervention in states’ domestic affairs “so we could all contribute to realizing the security and stability, aspired by our peoples.”

Conflicts
Brazen intervention in the domestic affairs of some Muslim countries have caused conflicts and crises in the region where these countries are located, said Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud in a speech addressing the summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Thursday. He said these interventions have heightened sectarian divisions and intensified internecine strife in these countries and the region, noting that “the use of militias for the purpose of destabilizing our nations requires serious responses to such interventions in order to preserve peace and security in our Islamic world.” He added “we are beholden to bring resolution to problems gnawing at the Islamic world, especially the Palestinian crisis which must be resolved in accordance with international and Arab peace resolutions.” The Saudi monarch called for an end to the Syrian crisis in accordance with Geneva I resolutions and UNSC resolution no. 2245 and an end to the Libyan crisis as well and at the same time he lauded efforts at making a success out of the Yemen negotiations taking place in Kuwait in accordance with UNSC resolution no. 2316.

He stressed the imperative to pool all resources to fight terrorism and protect young people from unwittingly succumbing to it out of misplaced motivations.

In that regard, he mentioned the steps taken to form the Islamic military coalition to fight terrorism which numbers 39 countries as members in it, imbued with the sense of achieving goals upheld and promoted by OIC. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday urged dozens of Muslim leaders gathered for a summit in Istanbul to end sectarian divisions in the Islamic world and join forces to fight terror.

Turkey is seeking to showcase its influence among the world’s estimated 1.7 billion Muslims, particularly in lands once controlled by the Ottoman Empire, at the two-day summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) which it will chair for the next two years. But the meeting bringing together over 30 heads of state and government has been shadowed by sectarian-tinged conflicts in Syria and Yemen that have pitted Shia Muslims — led by regional power Iran — against Sunni Muslim powers like Saudi Arabia.

Key guests at the summit included Saudi King Salman and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, in a rare public encounter although there were reports the two men had exchanged words. “I believe the greatest challenge we need to surmount is sectarianism. My religion is not that of Sunnis, of Shiites. My religion is Islam,” Erdogan said in his opening speech. “We should be uniting. Out of the conflicts, the tyranny, only the Muslims suffer,” he said, adding the summit meeting could be a “turning point” for the whole Islamic world.

Erdogan lashed out at Islamic State (IS) jihadists who seized swathes of Syria and Boko Haram Islamist extremists in Nigeria as two “terrorist organisations that are serving the same evil purpose.” He said that the OIC had accepted a Turkish proposal to set up a multinational police coordination centre for Islamic states to fight militants, to be based in Istanbul. “We need to establish an organisation to further strengthen cooperation in the fight against terror,” he said.

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