In December 2015, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia announced the formation of an Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition (IMCTC) to form a unified pan-Islamic front against terrorism. Mohammed bin Salman chairs this council since it was established prior to him becoming ‘Crown Prince in 2017’ and since.
Chiefs of Staff from Islamic countries met in Riyadh in March 2016, and affirmed “their determination to intensify efforts in fighting terrorism through joint work according to their capabilities, based on the desire of each member country to participate in operations or programs within the IMCTC framework as per its policies and procedures, and without compromising the sovereignty of the Coalition member countries.”
They also expressed the importance of activating the launch of the IMCTC, during an upcoming meeting of the Ministers of Defense of Coalition Member Countries.
Allow member countries of this strategic Coalition, with the support of peace-loving friendly nations and international organizations, to coordinate and unite their efforts in the ideology, communications, counter terrorism financing, and military domains, in order to fight all forms of terrorism and extremism and to effectively join other international security and peacekeeping efforts.
IMCTC Strategic Objectives:
Strengthen the contribution of Islamic countries towards global security and peace, and complementing international counter terrorism efforts.
Reinforce solidarity and collaboration among coalition member countries to present a unified front against terrorist organizations and their attempts to destabilize security and distort the image of Islam and Muslims.
Counter radical ideology in Coalition member countries through strategic communication campaigns to refute the radical and extremist narratives and propaganda.
Reaffirm the moderate values of Islam and its principles of peace, tolerance and compassion.
Combat terrorism financing in collaboration with Coalition member countries and international CTF authorities, to promote compliance with international agreements and advance legal, regulatory, and operational frameworks.
Establish strategic partnerships between member countries, supporting nations and international organizations to share counter terrorism information and expertise.
Terrorism nowadays is considered a critical issue that receives considerable attention in many countries worldwide and causes all human communities to suffer alike.
Our Islamic world is regarded as the first and highly affected victim of terrorism as many Islamic nations languish in this global epidemic, suffering from its scourges and tragedies. This harsh reality requires that Islamic countries play a more effective role to combat this issue. This must be done by working hard, collectively, and in an organized manner.
In response to these significant challenges, the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition (IMCTC) was established to form a genuine active coalition of 41 member countries. The objective behind establishing IMCTC is to rally countries and present a pan-Islamic, unified front to counter the ever-evolving threats of violent extremist organizations within the Coalition and elsewhere. In cooperation and by supporting nations and international organizations, IMCTC seeks to bring peace to affected regions and promote stability and prosperity to the Islamic world as well as the entire world.
As an official platform for open and transparent cooperation, the IMCTC is a coalition of willing countries that brings together those who look forward to participating in an active effort to combat terrorism. Furthermore, the IMCTC actively seeks to collaborate with international’s organization’s efforts in countering terrorism.
The Coalition’s headquarters, the Counter Terrorism Center (CTC), based in Riyadh, is working to lay down the key elements of the organized action to unify and coordinate counter terrorism efforts and capabilities. This will involve launching various fundamental initiatives to advance future activities across four domains of countering terrorism: Ideology, Communications, Counter Terrorist Financing (CTF), and Military.
These four domains are taken as the general scope within which the Coalition will achieve its goals in the war against terrorism, counter various terrorist and violent extremist ideologies and launch awareness efforts to promote a consistent message that reaffirms the principles of tolerance. It will also establish strategic regional and international partnerships to strengthen collaboration, and achieve inclusive efficiency in countering terrorism efforts in the CTF and military domains.
Indeed, the war against terrorism requires collective, integrated efforts and consistent work on different levels to undermine future terrorist threats and limit their impact. IMCTC seeks to achieve its strategic vision by working collaboratively alongside member countries, supporting nations and partners in the present and the future.
2017 Inaugural Meeting of the IMCTC Ministers of Defense Council
His Royal Highness Prince Mohammad Bin Salman Bin AbdulAziz Al Saud Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister of Defense Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Keynote Speech: His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin AbdulAziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister of Defence, at Inaugural Meeting of the IMCTC Ministers of Defence Council First of all, on behalf of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, I welcome my brothers and colleagues, Ministers of Defense of Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition countries. Our meeting today is very important, as in the past years terrorism has been operating in all our countries and most of these terrorist organizations operate in several countries with the absence of a strong, good and distinguished coordination among Islamic countries. Today, this issue has finished in the presence of this coalition. Today, more than forty Islamic countries are sending a very strong signal that they will work together and coordinate very strongly to support each other’s efforts, whether in military efforts, or financial, intelligence, or political aspects. This matter will happen today and every state will provide what it can in each domain according to their capabilities and potentials. Today, we have several initiatives in our meeting that will be announced in the final statement after the ministers’ agreement on them. I also express today our condolences to our brothers in Egypt, both leadership and people, for what happened in the last few days. It is really a very painful incident which makes us recall regularly and strongly the danger of this extremist terrorism. We all condole our brothers in Egypt and affirm that we will stand by Egypt and all the countries of the world to combat terrorism and extremism.
Today, terrorism and extremism have not achieved only the greatest danger of killing of innocent people or disseminating hatred, but the greatest danger done by the extremist terrorism is distorting the reputation of our tolerant religion. Therefore, we will not allow of what they have done of distorting this tolerant religion and intimidating innocents in Islamic countries and all countries of the world to continue any more than today. Today, tracking down terrorism has begun. We see its defeats in many countries worldwide, especially in Islamic countries, and today we will confirm that we will pursue it until it disappears completely from the surface of the earth. I welcome my brothers once again, wishing successful outcomes for this summit. And I hope that the efforts of this Coalition will be successful and distinguished. Welcome to all of you