Saudi Arabia has announced the formation of an “Islamic Alliance”: a coalition of 34 countries to combat Isis and other terrorist organisations.
The announcement was made on Tuesday at a press conference in Riyadh, where the centre of operations for the coalition will be, in a statement via the state news agency, SPA.
The long list of Arab and predominately Islamic countries declared:
A duty to protect the Islamic nation from the evils of all terrorist groups and organisations whatever their sect and name which wreak death and corruption on earth and aim to terrorise the innocent.
Although the announcement made no direct reference to Isis, it pledged to “combat terrorism and to save international peace and security”.
When asked if the coalition would focus on the terror group in Iraq and Syria, Saudi crown prince and defence minister Mohammed bin Salman (pictured above) said it would confront "not only" the group, but "any terrorist organisation that appears in front of us".
Saudi foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir was quoted by the Telegraph as adding:
There are discussions, countries that are currently part of the coalition (like) Saudi Arabia, the Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain, about sending some special forces into Syria, and those discussions are ongoing.
Some confusion arised however after Pakistan's foreign secretary, Aizaz Chaudhry, said he was surprised to read the news that Saudi Arabia had named Pakistan as an alliance member, stating that he has asked Pakistan’s ambassador to gain clarification on the matter.
You can browse the countries announced in Saudi Arabia's coalition in our interactive map, below:
Here's the full list of countries involved: