The UAE’s foreign minister has warned Europe that some countries could be classified as “incubators of terrorism” if they fail to better address extremism.
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al-Nahyan said that such countries should be publicly identified if they did not do more to address terror.
“Saudi Arabia is more keen to fight terrorism than the… Europeans,” Sheikh Abdullah said during the Tweeps Forum 2017. “The voices we hear calling for murder and shedding blood and stealing the wealth of people are in London, Germany, Spain and Italy.
“There will come a day when we see far more radicals, extremists and terrorists coming from Europe because of (a) lack of decision-making, and trying to be politically correct.
“From now on, we will name and shame these countries. We will classify them as incubators of terror if they don’t address this problem of terrorism in their lands.”
The Saudi and UAE foreign ministers took part of a panel discussion on digital responses to extremism, which was moderated by Francine Lacqua, anchor and editor-at-large at Bloomberg TV.
The two ministers discussed tackling the promotion of extremism on social media, with Al-Nahyan calling for wider criminalization of terrorist content on the Internet.
“Social media (players) must realize that there is content that is exploited by extremist and terrorist groups that want to recruit our sons and daughters and want to hijack religion,” the UAE minister said.
“Unfortunately, there is a legislative vacuum at the international level to criminalize this content.”
He pointed out that there is a responsibility for countries to legislate their national laws with the participation of international organizations and conventions.
He added that the establishment of a Global Center for Combatting Extremist Ideology, which was one of the outcomes of the US-Saudi summit, is a huge step by the Kingdom to confront radical thought.
Meanwhile, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said that one of the challenges is not knowing the identity of users on social media sites.
However, companies have began to cooperate more by identifying those who instigate or plan terrorist acts, and it is only a matter of time before there is an effective mechanism that doesn’t affect the freedom of legitimate users.
“There must be a way of knowing who will misuse these means,” Al-Jubeir said.