Deputy Prime Minister and Commander of the National Guard Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz today chaired the regular weekly meeting of the Council of Ministers, which stressed the importance of national unity, confronting extremism and terrorism, and countering the harm done by terrorist groups to the image of Islam, which is a religion of peace and moderation.
The cabinet endorsed the Crown Prince's statement in Putrajaya on October 17 to the Tenth Summit of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, on promoting national unity, opposing the lack of moderation that leads to extremism and terrorism, preventing deviant terrorists from harming Islam and distorting the image of Muslims, and stressing that Islam is the only way to achieve all aspirations and ambitions. His speech also affirmed that the Muslim community is a community for peace, friendship and cooperation, characteristics that Islam implants in every Muslim; and called for these characteristics to be implemented not only among Muslims themselves but between Muslims and non-Muslims.
The cabinet also endorsed the Crown Prince's call for the OIC to form a committee of no more than five members constituted from the delegation heads present, to be called the 'Islamic Committee for Peace' and entrusted with discussing outstanding issues among Muslims and between Muslims and non-Muslims. The cabinet noted that such a committee, if its intentions are sincere and faithful, could contribute to the solution of outstanding issues. The cabinet also commented on the Crown Prince's call for the OIC to utilize intellectual tools to confront extremism and terrorism, correct wrong ideologies, and enlighten young Muslims, through expanding the mandate of the Council of the Islamic Jurisprudence [Fiqh] Academy, an OIC affiliate, as proposed in a formula submitted by the Saudi delegation to the Summit.
The cabinet then expressed appreciation of the success achieved by the Crown Prince's subsequent visit to Islamabad and the warm welcome accorded him by Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, and by the government and people of Pakistan, ascribing that success to the distinguished fraternal relations binding the two countries, and the solidarity and mutual cooperation between their peoples in the interest of the Muslim community.
On the Palestinian situation, the cabinet decried the continued suffering of the Palestinian people as a result of constant aggression by Israel's occupation forces, and stressed the Palestinians' need for material and moral support of all kinds from the Muslim community and the world in general, in order that they may regain their legitimate rights, and establish the Palestinian state with Al-Quds [East Jerusalem] as its capital.
Turning to domestic issues, the cabinet passed a number of resolutions, including approval of the unified security strategy in the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to combat the phenomenon of extremism that is affiliated to terrorism; and authorization for the Minister of Foreign Affairs or his deputy to discuss and sign a memorandum of understanding on political bilateral consultations with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan.