The following is the speech of Saudi Crown Prince Abdallah Bin Abd Al-Aziz at the opening of the counter-terrorism conference. The speech aired on Channel 1, Saudi TV on February 5, 2005:
Al-Aziz: In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful. Honorable brothers and friends, welcome. Peace be upon you, and Allah's compassion and blessings.
I am pleased to thank you for accepting the invitation to this historic meeting. I welcome you on behalf of my brother, [King Fahd] the Custodian of the Two Holy Places, may Allah protect him, and on behalf of the Saudi people in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the homeland of Islam and peace, from which the call for equality and brotherhood for all mankind was issued, as Allah says: "O Mankind, We have created you male and female; and We have divided you into tribes and sub-tribes that you may know one another. Verily, the most noble among you in the sight of Allah is he who is the most righteous among you."
This divine eternal call represents the spirit of the true Islam-- the religion of wisdom and preaching with good words. It is not represented by the false messages of those who have left the fold of Islam and Muslims [messages] from the caves of darkness that reach the enemies of Islam, who create out of them a distorted picture of Islam, which could not be further from the truth. The Prophet of Islam is the Prophet of mercy, and Islam is the religion of mercy. Mercy and terrorism cannot reside in one heart or one home.
Brothers and friends, this conference attended by countries from various cultures, religions, and regimes, is absolute proof that when terrorism selects its victims, it does not distinguish between cultures, religions, or regimes. This is because terrorism is not linked to a specific culture, it does not belong to a specific religion and cannot be attributed to a specific regime. Terrorism is an international network of crime, created by evil minds, full of hatred towards mankind and charged with a blind will to kill and destroy.
This conference is a manifestation of the international community's resolve to oppose this criminal network everywhere, to fight the weapon of treachery with the weapon of justice, to fight the corrupt ideology with virtuous ideology, and to confront the extremist discourse with moderate and tolerant discourse. I must mention that the network of terrorism is firmly tied to three international crime networks: The arms-smuggling network, the drug smuggling network, and the money laundering network. Therefore, it is difficult to win our war against terrorism, as long as this war does not include a crucial contention with these three networks of crime.
Brothers and friends, Saudi Arabia was one of the first countries to suffer from terrorism, to warn of its danger, and to fight it with all its might on local, regional, and international levels. We are currently in a war against terrorism and against those who support and justify it, and we will continue, with the help of Allah, until we destroy this evil.
We will present our experience in countering terrorism to you and to this conference. Similarly, we expect to benefit from your experience in this area. There is no doubt that our combined experience will help us all in our campaign against terrorism. I hope that this conference will begin a new era of effective international cooperation, in order to create an international society free of terrorism. In this context I call upon all the countries to establish an international center for counter-terrorism, where experts in this field will operate. The goal is to exchange and transfer information instantly, in a manner that will suit the pace of events and prevent them from occurring.
Brothers and friends, I know that the danger of terrorism cannot disappear overnight, that our war against terrorism will be bitter and long, and that the brutality and violence of terrorism will grow stronger as the noose tightens around it. But I am completely certain that the final outcome will be the triumph of the forces of love, tolerance, and peace, over the forces of hatred, extremism, and crime.
Allah will help us. Allah is our Master, and He supports us. Thank you, and Allah's mercy and blessings be upon you.