Washington: Top US diplomat John Kerry Friday made a passionate plea to wipe out poverty and improve health and education as the most powerful antidote to the "toxic" beliefs of extremists.
"Whether it`s ISIL or Boko Haram or Al-Shebab, their ideology does not include a plan to build a nation," Kerry said, addressing a forum dedicated to global development.
"They don`t have a plan to create jobs or deliver opportunity. They don`t have any of those things that people most want. But they do have a strategy to capitalize on the grievances of those who feel under-represented and left behind," the US secretary of state said.
Unveiling plans to pour $63 million into Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Nigeria, Vietnam to help boost public health, especially to fight AIDS and HIV, Kerry said: "Investing in the foundations of economic growth -- health, education, food security -- is absolutely critical."
"When extremists measure their success by what they destroy, we are compelled to measure ours by what we`re building," Kerry insisted.
"When extremists succeed from stoking old hatreds, we succeed by imagining new solutions and delivering opportunity."
The top US diplomat warned there were extremists who "want to prey on young people`s frustrations, who want to seduce people to follow them in a very calculated way into a dead end."
Forging a global coalition to go after the Islamic State group which has seized a swath of territory in Iraq and Syria, "is the last thing that we wanted to have to do," Kerry said, just hours before chairing a meeting of the UN Security Council dedicated to the threat posed by the Islamic militants.
"The energies of the world ought to be spent providing that education and delivering the healthcare and opening up economic opportunity, creating new energy opportunities, all of these things -- not having to continue to fight each other because someone thinks they can tell everybody else how to live and what to do."