Iran's foreign minister says solutions to combat "the global war" on extremism require "a lot of soul-searching."

Mohammad Javad Zarif says "the most important first step to resolving the problems" is to figure out why some are attracted to "perverted ideologies of demigods who are financed by people looking for short-term gain at the expense of others."

Speaking Tuesday at a two-day conference on conflict mediation in the Norwegian capital, Zarif said some of those "who are beheading innocent human beings in Syria and Iraq (...) speak French and English with a perfect accent."

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini also attended the event that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to speak Wednesday.