(CNSNews.com) – The ideology which Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) is trying to spread through the Middle East is a “dangerous … offensive … insulting distortion of Islam,” Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday.
Speaking in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia where he garnered pledges of support from ten Arab nations for a campaign against the jihadist group, Kerry again underscored the administration’s determination to dissociate ISIS from the religion it claims to be inspired by and to be serving.
He said Arab nations play “the leading role, really” in a multifaceted coalition whose tasks range from military support to “the effort to repudiate once and for all the dangerous, the offensive, the insulting distortion of Islam that ISIL propaganda attempts to spread throughout the region and the world.”
“ISIL attempts to tell people that what they’re doing is somehow based on their notion of Islam and their view of religion,” he said. “No religion, certainly not a peaceful, great religion like Islam, ever condones the kinds of activities that ISIL engages in.”
Kerry spoke alongside his Saudi counterpart, Saud Al-Faisal, who recalled that King Abdullah said last month “that it was a shame that these terrorists undertake these activities in the name of religion.”
“They kill innocent peoples and they cut their victims and they take pride in this in the name of religion,” Saud said. “They are killing souls that God has forbidden to kill, and they have disfigured the face of humanity.”
The Saudi foreign minister also said that the kingdom “has always taken initiatives with regard to a firm position towards terrorists and against them,” adding that there was “no limit” to what it can provide to the anti-ISIS coalition.
Earlier, Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations participating in a conference with Kerry signed up to a declaration endorsing the effort against the terrorist group.
“The participating states agreed to do their share in the comprehensive fight against ISIL, including: stopping the flow of foreign fighters through neighboring countries, countering financing of ISIL and other violent extremists, repudiating their hateful ideology, ending impunity and bringing perpetrators to justice, contributing to humanitarian relief efforts, assisting with the reconstruction and rehabilitation of communities brutalized by ISIL, supporting states that face the most acute ISIL threat, and, as appropriate, joining in the many aspects of a coordinated military campaign against ISIL,” the declaration stated.
Signatories were the United States, the six Arab Gulf states (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, Bahrain) as well as Iraq, Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon.
Obama: Islamic State 'Is Not Islamic' (Sept. 10, 2014)
CAIR Wants Obama to Distinguish Islamic State From Islam (Sept. 10, 2014)Kerry: ‘The Real Face of Islam is a Peaceful Religion’ (Sept. 3, 2014)