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Saudi Holds First Counter-Terrorism Alliance Summit

Saudi Arabia's crown prince Mohammed bin Salman on Monday vowed to “wipe terrorists from the face of the earth” as officials from 40 Muslim countries gathered at the first meeting of an Islamic counter-terrorism alliance.

Bin Salman, who is also the Saudi defense minister, told officials in Riyadh that “in past years, terrorism has been functioning in all of our countries... with no coordination” among national authorities.

“This ends today, with this alliance,” he added.

The summit is the first meeting of defense ministers and other senior officials from the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition, which officially incorporates 41 countries and identifies itself as a “pan-Islamic unified front” against violent extremism.

The alliance was announced in 2015 under the auspices of Bin Salman, whose rapid ascent since his appointment as heir to the throne in June has shaken the political scene across the region.

Sunday's meeting comes as several military coalitions, including key Saudi ally the United States, battle to push Daesh from its last remaining bastions in Iraq and Syria.

The alliance group excludes Saudi Arabia's arch-rival, Shiite-dominated Iran, as well as Syria and Iraq, whose leaders have close ties to Tehran.

Saudi Arabia accuses Iran of supporting armed groups across the Middle East, including Lebanon's Shiite Hezbollah and Yemen's Huthi rebels.

But Saudi General Abdullah al-Saleh said: “'The pillar of this coalition is inclusion.”

“Our common enemy is terrorism, not any religion, sect or race.”

Saudi Holds First Counter-Terrorism Alliance Summit

Officials from 40 Muslim countries met in Saudi Arabia Monday where Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman pledged to “wipe terrorists from the face of the earth”.

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Saudi Arabia's crown prince Mohammed bin Salman on Monday vowed to “wipe terrorists from the face of the earth” as officials from 40 Muslim countries gathered at the first meeting of an Islamic counter-terrorism alliance.

Bin Salman, who is also the Saudi defense minister, told officials in Riyadh that “in past years, terrorism has been functioning in all of our countries... with no coordination” among national authorities.

“This ends today, with this alliance,” he added.

The summit is the first meeting of defense ministers and other senior officials from the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition, which officially incorporates 41 countries and identifies itself as a “pan-Islamic unified front” against violent extremism.

The alliance was announced in 2015 under the auspices of Bin Salman, whose rapid ascent since his appointment as heir to the throne in June has shaken the political scene across the region.

Sunday's meeting comes as several military coalitions, including key Saudi ally the United States, battle to push Daesh from its last remaining bastions in Iraq and Syria.

The alliance group excludes Saudi Arabia's arch-rival, Shiite-dominated Iran, as well as Syria and Iraq, whose leaders have close ties to Tehran.

Saudi Arabia accuses Iran of supporting armed groups across the Middle East, including Lebanon's Shiite Hezbollah and Yemen's Huthi rebels.

But Saudi General Abdullah al-Saleh said: “'The pillar of this coalition is inclusion.”

“Our common enemy is terrorism, not any religion, sect or race.”

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