Accessibility links

Saudi Ambassador Calls for Increased International Cooperation Against Terrorism

  • Lisa Ferdinando

The Saudi Ambassador to the United States, Turki al-Faisal, has called for increased international cooperation in the fight against terrorism. Ambassador al-Faisal, speaking at the opening of a Middle East Institute conference, said terrorism has become the biggest threat to peace and stability in the world.

He called al-Qaida and other groups like it "evil cults" that do not represent the Islamic faith. "It is to our despair that terrorists claim to be faithful to Islam and faithful to God. They are not. They are totally and utterly wrong and they are absolutely in violation of the basic teachings of Islam," he said.

He called for international solidarity in the fight against terrorism and those who support it. He rejected any suggestion that his country has supported terrorists. "We have suffered at the hands of terrorists. We do not support them. We do not fund them. These terrorists are as much against us as they are against you," he said.

As the ambassador was speaking in Washington, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee was looking into the question of Saudi Arabia's efforts to curb funding for terror groups.

One terrorism expert testifying at the hearing, Steven Emerson, called Saudi efforts inadequate and said the government continues to promote anti-western propaganda.

U.S. Treasury department official Daniel Glaser told the committee that Saudi Arabia has made progress in stemming the flow of Saudi money to terrorists and confronting the ideology of extremists, but said the Saudi government needs to do more.