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Expert: IS serious threat to stability in Middle East

April 16, 2015, 18:30 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Islamic State became a the symbol of disintegration of the state system in the Middle East — in Syria, Iraq, Libya and Yemen, head of the Pakistani Center for International Strategic Studies says
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© AP Photo/Dusan Vranic

MOSCOW, April 16. /TASS/. The Islamic State (IS) organization is a serious threat to stability in the Middle East, executive director of the Pakistani Center for International Strategic Studies Ali Sarwar Naqvi said on Thursday.

Naqvi noted that threat from the Islamic State is high on the agenda at the 4th Moscow Conference on International Security. In this respect, the conference is timely and important, this year it focuses on problems that are hard to solve for the international community, the expert added.

"Great concern was expressed [at the conference] about the existence of IS, which became the symbol of disintegration of the state system in the Middle East — in Syria, Iraq, Libya and now in Yemen. It is a problem that becomes bigger and bigger, represents a threat for the state system of Middle Eastern countries, for the stability of the region," Naqvi said.

"In a multi-polar world, there are many centers of power, and it is important in this respect for them to coordinate their efforts on solving these problems. This opinion was voiced, in particular, by the Pakistani defense minister," he added.

Iran’s Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan said at the 4th Moscow Conference on International Security said that Western countries are trying to compensate for their military defeats by using the potential of terrorist groups.

"Today, I must say with enormous regret that the countries, whose programs in Syria and Iraq have not reached the desired results, conduct special training and logistical planning, support terrorist organizations, including the Islamic State in order to send these forces in the future to Afghanistan, Central Asia, to the Caucasus, India, western China and even to Europe," Dehghan said.

"Apart from the Taliban and al-Qaeda, we see the development of the situation with IS," the foreign minister said. "America’s news strategy and deliberate actions of a number of countries in the region show that there is a program for using the potential of terrorist groups to create political equilibrium in the issues of security and disrupting the geopolitics of the region," he added.

"These countries are trying to compensate for their military defeats by unleashing mediated wars and giving them ideological undertones," Dehghan said. "I am warning you that indifference toward such behavior will lead to a tragic result," the Iranian minister said. "Independent countries should cooperate in creating a front of resistance," he added.

IS not direct threat to Russia

The Islamic State (IS) does not directly threaten Russia, but special services are closely watching the Russians and citizens of other CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries that have joined the group, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday at an annual question and answer session officially known as "The Direct Line with Vladimir Putin."

"For us, of course, there is no direct threat from IS," Putin said. "But what really causes our concern is that our citizens turn up there [in IS]," he added.

Putin noted that Russians that undergo training at IS-controlled territories can later return to Russia. "Yes, we understand this, we take it into account and work appropriately," the president said. "I cannot say that we know everyone [recruited by IS] by names, but [we know] approximate number, where they fight, where they train. Well, [we] know some of them by names," he added. Russia’s special services actively cooperate with their colleagues in CIS countries on this issue, Putin added.

Answering a question by a student of Moscow State University, Putin reminded how IS was created. According to the Russian president, the extremist group emerged after Saddam Hussein was destroyed and former elite was ousted. "They [representatives of that elite] turned into extremist groupings, created IS, which was joined by a considerable number of former regular officers of the Iraqi army," Putin said. "They started to draw, like a magnet, other radicals of different types to this region," he added.

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