2006 News Story

King Abdullah: Arab world will not witness a sectarian war

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz said today that the Arab world would not witness a sectarian war in the region, as analysts have predicted. In fact, the situation in the region looks more promising in the days ahead with Arab and international deliberations underway, the King said.

King Abdullah made the remarks in an interview with the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Siyassah.

The King praised Palestinian efforts to form a national unity government, which is the key to the path to peace in the Middle East. He drew attention to the Arab Peace Initiative, proposed by the Kingdom and adopted by the Arab League in 2002, as an indication that Arabs seek peace.

On Saudi-US relations, the King said that the ties between the two countries are strong, and that there is a mutual understanding on international issues. Saudi Arabia often advises the US administration on issues, and it listens to the Kingdom's views, he said. American society is characterized by freedom of expression, and the Kingdom enjoys the chance to listen to what Americans have to say, he noted.

Turning to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), King Abdullah said that the organization is an important one that benefits the people of the region, and as the largest GCC member, Saudi Arabia will remain patient with those parties who create disputes in the interest of the organization.

Recent financial surpluses provide an opportunity for Gulf countries to build their economies, infrastructures and economic ties with other countries for the prosperity of their people, the King said. Saudi Arabia's agreement with the UAE to build an economic city is an example of the economic linkage at the highest level.