- Tony Blair: "We should be on the side of those who favour religiously tolerant societies and modern economies"
23 April 2014
Tony Blair has warned Western leaders they must put aside their differences with Russia over Ukraine to focus on the threat of Islamic extremism.
In a speech the former UK prime minister - now a Middle East envoy - said powerful nations must "take sides" and back "open-minded" groups.
Mr Blair told the BBC ahead of the speech the West would pay a "very heavy price" for not intervening in Syria.
He said the opportunity to create "an optimistic solution" had been missed.
Mr Blair gave his speech at Bloomberg in London amid high tensions between Russia and the West over Ukraine.
Western leaders accuse Russia of using undercover military personnel to back separatists in eastern Ukraine - a claim Russia denies.