Anti-terrorism cooperation

  • 23 April 2016

Terrorism is the main threat that blights modern societies. This threat has increased in light of the digital revolution that enabled terrorists across the globe to communicate without limits. Hence, fighting this grave inevitably hinges on international collective efforts. The nature of terrorism shows that not a single state can by itself counter this threat. The door should remain open to any country that is willing to put forward proposals to uproot terrorism and terrorists.

In this context, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces- may God protect him- told US President Barack Obama on Wednesday in Riyadh that terrorism, violence and extremism are international challenges. His Highness added that terrorism is not limited to specific regions, hence it requires close cooperation between partners and regional and international powers to uproot this phenomenon. His Highness pointed out to the challenges and current changes that also require the elaboration of a clear vision in order to put an end to foreign interferences aiming at undermining the peace and stability of the peoples of the region.

The danger of terrorism is all the more serious, given that terrorist organisations have found breeding ground, financial support and arms offered by some parties with an agenda to destroy the Muslim Ummah. Terrorism, therefore, is a plot to destroy the basis of the modern nation state and its institutions. Terrorist acts are indeed jeopardizing the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of these states. Recently, the UAE warned against this situation during the 13th summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul.

The UAE had an early awareness of the dangers posed by terrorism to the stability of countries and societies and was one of the first countries to adopt a comprehensive strategy to fight this plague along with extremism. This strategy has a legal, legislative, religious, cultural, media and social dimensions, besides a security component which confirms the comprehensiveness and effectiveness of the UAE approach.

In November 2014, the Ministers’ Council announced a list of terrorist groups in implementation of federal law number 7 of 2014 relating to the fight against terrorist crimes and issued by His Highness President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan- may God protect him. The list was published in different media outlets for more transparency and also to raise the awareness of society about these terrorist organizations.
Furthermore, the UAE has adopted significant initiatives in the field of the fight against terrorism and violent extremism. This was made possible thanks to the clear UAE vision against terrorism and the rapidly taken and effective steps adopted by the country to insulate society from such destructive extremist ideas through promoting a moderate religious discourse that act as a shield against terrorism and debunks extremist and sectarian ideas.

Despite the efforts that have been undertaken to uproot terrorism at the international level. More work still needs to be done in order to effectively combat terrorism. The tools used to counter terrorism should develop in tandem with the development of the means used by terrorist to perpetrate their criminal acts. Terrorist groups are unfortunately still able to commit acts of carnage and destruction across the globe, hence combating this phenomenon is a common interest for the international community.