Arab states warn against foreign interference to fuel ethnic strife

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Algiers, March 8 (IANS) Secretary-General of the Council for Arab Interior Ministers Mohammed Ali Kouman on Wednesday warned against foreign interference that is fuelling sectarianism and ethnicity in the Arab region.

In his opening notes at the 35th Arab Interior Ministers Council opened on Wednesday in Algiers, Kouman said “the Arab region is still facing delicate security circumstances characterized by the intensification of external interference in the internal affairs of Arab countries,” Xinhua reported.

He said that these interventions are compounded by the challenges associated with organised crime, such drug trafficking, human beings trafficking and illegal migration, as well as laundering money resulting from these crimes, which make the region more vulnerable to serious consequences.

He also warned that electronic crime, or cyber-crime, and the risks posed by the return of fighters from conflict areas and the hotbeds of tension and the movement of terrorist organisations into new areas.

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He said these risks impose on the Arab security agencies additional responsibilities and require updated confrontation plans and mechanisms.

He concluded by urging for strengthening Arab security cooperation and to coordinate with neighbouring countries and regional and international organisations in which Arab countries share the same security challenges.

The 35th session of the Council of Arab Ministers of the Interior kicked off in Algiers on Wednesday, as participants are due to focus in a two-day meeting on reinforcing security cooperation to face security challenges threatening the region, including terrorism, trans-border criminality, violent extremism, illegal migration, as well as cyber-crime and cyber-terrorism.

The meeting witnesses the participation of 20 Arab countries represented by ministers of interior.

–IANS

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