Saudi Arabia forms 34-nation 'Islamic military alliance' to fight terrorism

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Saudi Arabia says 34 Muslim-majority nations have agreed to form a new military alliance to fight terrorism with a joint operations centre based in the kingdom's capital, Riyadh.

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The announcement carried early Tuesday by the Saudi Press Agency says the Saudi-led alliance was established because terrorism "should be fought by all means and collaboration should be made to eliminate it."

While Saudi Arabia's regional rival, Shiite Iran, is not part of the coalition, the alliance brings together diverse Muslim countries from several continents, including Mali, Malaysia, Pakistan, Lebanon and Egypt as well as neighbouring Gulf countries such as the United Arab Emirates.

The announcement comes as Saudi Arabia leads a military intervention in Yemen against Shiite rebels and is part of the U.S.-led coalition bombing the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.


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