The nine decades of Saudi Arabia’s life have witnessed diplomatic efforts through which the Kingdom has sought to reach a more tolerant and peaceful world, especially in the region where conflicts and disagreements are not at ease.
Saudi Arabia, based on its role and position in the Arab and Islamic world, at various levels, whether politically or economically, is in a major position to promote peace, unify discourse at the Arab or Islamic level, reduce its intensity, reject hatred, build bridges of communication between Arab and Islamic peoples and other peoples of the world, and contain the crises that arise.
Saudi Arabia has made great efforts in this context to resolve differences and disputes, which crystallized in specific agreements, summits, conferences, and projects through which it sought to unite the parties to unify peoples, end wars, and promote the values of tolerance and coexistence at the regional and international levels.
Among these efforts was the Taif Agreement in 1989, which restored the unity of Lebanon and ended the civil war, as well as the Jeddah Peace Agreement, which in 2018 ended the longest conflict in the African continent between Ethiopia and Eritrea, under the auspices of King Salman bin Abdulaziz and in the presence of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Saudi Arabia also contributed to ending a major rupture that lasted for more than ten years between Djibouti and Eritrea in 2018, in addition to the Riyadh Agreement at the end of last year, which laid the foundation for peace between the factions in Yemen.
In July 2018, Saudi Arabia strengthened its concern for security and stability in Afghanistan, when it hosted reconciliation sessions between the parties, while an international conference of Muslim scholars was held on “peace and stability in Afghanistan” to present the views of various parties to achieve Afghan reconciliation and stop terrorism and extremism.
Also, Saudi Arabia held conferences that brought together scholars and clerics from different religions and sects, to unify the word among them and to establish the values of coexistence between peoples of different religions, doctrines, cultures, and languages, through several bodies, perhaps the most prominent of which is the Islamic World League and the King Abdullah Center for Dialogue between Followers of Religions and Cultures.
Promote the values of coexistence
These efforts had a tangible effect in the formation of several documents, including the Makkah Document to stop sectarian fighting in Iraq in 2006, in addition to the Makkah Document on the sidelines of the International Conference on the Values of Moderation in 2019, which provides for the fight against terrorism, injustice, and oppression, as well as the rejection of violating human rights and dignity, and establishing the values of coexistence between different religions, cultures, races, and sects in the Islamic world. This was approved by 1,200 Islamic personalities from 139 countries of various Islamic sects.
These agreements and documents have a great role in bringing together the various parties, ending wars, establishing re-growth and the values of coexistence, and achieving peace. Their sustainability depends on other factors, the most important of which is the continuation of consensus between the various parties, in addition to international efforts in this, and preventing any attempts to thwart them.
Saudi Arabia’s efforts were not limited to sponsoring agreements and treaties only, but also included many symbolic moves expressing the importance of promoting the values of coexistence and building bridges with various religions and cultures, such as coordinating meetings between Muslim sheikhs, priests, rabbis and officials from Saudi Arabia. This confirms that the Kingdom seeks to emphasize the importance of building bridges between everyone and countering hate speech.
It should be noted that from the standpoint of its leadership position, Saudi Arabia has achieved many changes in the Arab, Islamic and regional political scene, with agreements to build peace in the region, and alliances and partnerships to strengthen cooperation between countries, some of which rise to a strategic level under the auspices of Saudi Arabia.
This is in addition to the agreements of various forms at the international level, such as what Saudi Arabia seeks in governments and international organizations for the development of many countries and support for their governments and peoples, in addition to working to remove the names of some countries from the lists of countries sponsoring terrorism, removing previous international sanctions, and encouraging Arab and Islamic countries and the international community to stand by these countries.