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There is no grey area in anti-terror fight — King

By JT - Oct 20,2014 - Last updated at Oct 20,2014

AMMAN — His Majesty King Abdullah on Monday said that “there is no grey area” in the fight against terrorism.

“All should realise that we must take a side in the confrontation between the moderate and extremist approaches. There is no grey area.”

“All world countries are in a state of war between moderation or extremism,” the King told lawmakers at a meeting with president and members of the Lower House’s Democratic Gathering Bloc.

“There is a civil war within Islam now, but as Arabs and Muslims, we, unfortunately, have not realised how serious the situation is,” the King said. 

He noted that there is Islamic extremism and, on the other hand, “there is Zionist extremism… stakeholders should acknowledge there is extremism in all camps”.

The King stressed that the war against terrorism “would not take one or two years. If the military battle takes a brief time, the security and ideological war might extend to 10 or 15 years”. 

Jordan, as a Hashemite state, does not only protect Muslims, but also Christians “in the country and the region. What is happening to them [Christians] in Syria and Iraq is a catastrophe”, the Monarch told the lawmakers. 

Jordanian Muslims and Christians will work together to “keep these threats away from our borders. We have to think together how to deal with the various challenges. We are living in a new and changing world”. 

His Majesty reiterated that the security and stability of Jordan are above any other consideration, highlighting citizens’ high level of awareness as key in keeping the country safe. 

At the meeting, the King noted that Jordanians’ belonging to their collective identity is vital in efforts to safeguard higher national interests, according to a Royal Court statement. 

King Abdullah called for enhancing national consensus and focusing on priorities in order to foster national cohesion, which, he said, stands strongly in the face of all challenges. 

He reiterated his “huge” confidence in the armed forces and security apparatuses, as they are always up to the task in protecting the country and its achievement.

The King noted that Jordan’s participation in the war against terrorism as part of an international coalition is aimed at protecting the national interests and security amid all the chaos the region is undergoing. 

He underlined that the Kingdom will always stand against terrorism and extremism regardless of their sources and advocates. 

The Monarch pointed out that confronting such threats requires the efforts of all to combat all forms of terrorism at the intellectual and educational levels, and through increasing public awareness, a goal His Majesty said that Lower House has a major role in achieving.  

On the other hand, King Abdullah noted that the economic difficulties, particularly the energy bill, remain the foremost challenges facing the country, and can be addressed through partnership between the state agencies, private sector and civil society organisations. He indicated that poverty and unemployment top economic priorities, underlining a need for a national partnership between all sectors to alleviate these problems through implementing development and investment projects across Jordan to create job opportunities. 

The Monarch highlighted difficulties facing the national economy due to hosting a large number of Syrian refugees, which imposes a burden on the infrastructure and other services, especially in the central and northern regions. 

As for the reform process, His Majesty underscored that the reform plan is moving steadily and gradually and “nothing will slow down its progress” for it is of “utmost priority”. 

To this effect, he stressed the significance of responsible partnership between the executive and legislative powers to contribute to the comprehensive development process. 

Discussions at the meeting also covered the latest regional events, where His Majesty highlighted Jordan’s stance supporting efforts to deal with challenges facing the region in order to achieve security and stability for its people. 

For their part, members of the bloc commended King Abdullah’s efforts to reach out to all segments of society, praising the Kingdom’s stands vis-à-vis regional and international issues, which they described as “moderate, prudent and balanced”. 

They also hailed Jordan’s efforts to fight terrorism and extremism, while promoting the concepts of coexistence and tolerance. 

Regarding parliamentary work, the MPs cited a number of local issues that should be addressed with urgency, especially with regard to the rule of law and the state’s authority. 

Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour said the government will follow up on the issues they raised, noting, regarding the economic file, that the government plans to diversify energy resources in the upcoming stage. 

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