In Saudi Arabia, Trump admits India is 'victim of terrorism'
- Author: Leroy Wright Jun 03, 2017,
Jun 03, 2017, 9:28
Trump, speaking in Saudi Arabia, urged Muslim nations to join the United States against killing innocent people in the name of religion and the failure to take a firm and united stand against terrorism. "A better future is only possible if your nations drive out the terrorists and drive out the extremists", Trump said during the address. "Drive out the extremists", Trump continued, "Drive them out of your places of worship".
In the first official reaction to the U.S. president's speech during the summit he held in Riyadh with leaders from 55 Arab and Islamic states, Zarif rejected allegations that Tehran exports and promotes terrorism and interferes in the internal affairs of its Arab neighbors. The president addressed over 50 Muslim leaders from across the world in Riyadh, during his first foreign trip since assuming office.
To be sure, Trump's predecessors have also forged close ties with Saudi Arabia, an important USA partner in the Middle East, and other nations with questionable human rights records.
Washington is leading a coalition battling I.S., a Sunni Muslim jihadist organization, in Syria and Iraq, and Trump said he would hold a press conference "in about two weeks" on how the U.S.is faring in the battle.
At the beginning of the summit, King Salman said Riyadh had "had enough of its hostile practices and its interferences in Yemen and other countries in the region".
Makdisi pointed out that Trump equated Hezbollah, a Lebanese political and military group made up mostly of Shia Muslims, with ISIS and al Qaeda. "Or is it to fight terrorism and to fight an extreme form of Islam?" He called Iran "a government that speaks openly of mass murder, vowing the destruction of Israel, death to America, and ruin for many leaders and nations in this room..."
Trump gave his speech in Saudi Arabia, where he ditched his hard-line rhetoric from the 2016 election campaign and instead called Islam "one of the world's great faiths".
He noted that Trump on Saturday signed a $110 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia, a key goal of the visit. Words really matter, however, and especially in the Middle East.
As a candidate, Trump proposed temporarily banning Muslims from entering the United States.
One speech can not change Arab or Muslim perceptions of the president or the U.S.as an ally.
The second point, in keeping with his "America First" platform, is the imperative on Middle Eastern nations to take the lead in stamping out this threat.