Former UK Prime Minister and now Middle East envoy Tony Blair has encouraged Western leaders to focus on the threat of Islamic extremism and to put aside their differences with Russia over Ukraine.
In his speech at Bloomberg’s London office Mr Blair called on Western leaders to “elevate the issue of religious extremism to the top of the agenda”.
And they must co-operate with other countries – “in particular, Russia and China” – regardless of “other differences”.
He argued the threat posed by a radical view which “distorts and warps Islam’s true message” was “spreading across the world”.
“It is destabilising communities and even nations. It is undermining the possibility of peaceful co-existence in an era of globalisation. “This struggle between what we may call the open-minded and the closed-minded is at the heart of whether the 21st Century turns in the direction of peaceful co-existence or conflict between people of different cultures.”