In a unique way Saudi Arabia has announced the formation of a military alliance based on 34 countries to fight growing threat of terrorism in Middle East and some other countries. The alliance was announced at an unusual news conference in Riyadh, where Saudi Deputy Crown Prince and Defence Minister Mohammed bin Salman revealed a military alliance of Muslim countries, which included Pakistan. The purpose was to coordinate efforts against terrorism in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Egypt and Afghanistan. The working and the role is yet be decided in this alliance govern by the Saudi Arabia.
But as it was expected archrival of Saudi Arabia in the region, Iran has not been included in the alliance along with Iraq and Syria. It is surprising that two of the most terror affected countries of Middle East are not part of this alliance. It sums up the credibility of an alliance to root out terrorism from Iraq and Syria which will operate in these countries without their consultation.
It seems that alliance has been formed without proper homework and consultation with all other major countries. Pakistan has lodged complaint and has sought a clarification from the Kingdom for including its name in the alliance. Formation of this alliance seems a hasty decision after pressure from United States to do more to combat terrorism in the region. It is understood as policies of United States are failing in Ukrain and Syria and Russian influence is on the rise in Syria.
It is a fact that tackling terrorism is a common challenge and all states should come up jointly to eliminate this threat. But before announcing this coalition Saudi Arabia should have taken concerned states into confidence. Chances of success of this new alliance are bleak until its participants put aside all their political and ideological difference.
All the regional stakeholders must be taken on board to meet the objectives of newly formed alliance.