Qatari Flag - File Photo
CAIRO – 9 July 2017: Qatar’s “sovereignty” claims are void and cannot be used to justify the country’s violation of international law or the threat it has imposed on neighboring countries, Egyptian experts stated, commenting on Qatar’s rejection of the Arab demands.
The small gulf state has justified its rejection of the 13-point list of demands proposed by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain to end the blockade, by claiming that they would have compromised its sovereignty.
Speaking at Chatham House in London, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani stated, “Reading between the lines the blockading countries were demanding we must end our sovereignty as the price for the ending of the siege.”
Ayman Salama, professor of general international law and member of the Egyptian Council for Foreign Affairs, says, “A country’s foreign sovereignty in international law is relative and bound by the scope of its commitment to the regulations and concepts of the law.”
“States are not allowed to hold on to goals of absolute sovereignty, having a sovereignty beyond the law, or intervening in the international sovereign affairs of other countries,” Salama states. He explains that the kind of sovereignty claimed by Qatar means “we are living in international chaos,” and that international relations, by Qatar’s claims, would become “a battleground for fierce monsters.”
Salama stressed that Qatar would never admit the existence of another power beyond its will, even if it is that of the law or ethics.
“The state cannot, in order to achieve its goals, ignore the interests of other states; and it must exercise its authority within the framework of international law and its international commitments,” Salama stated.
Mohamed Hamed, a researcher in international relations, says that “threatening regional security and the security of neighboring countries cannot be considered sovereignty.”
“The claim of sovereignty is void…and Qatar is accustomed to breaking promises,” Hamed says. “The boycotting countries have had enough of Qatar and its attempts to repudiate its international obligations.”
Hamed further adds that Qatar has violated its commitments as a member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which includes protecting the security of neighboring countries, “and it therefore breaches the council’s charter, the charter of the Arab League, and that of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).”
Gamal al-Menshawy, Islamist movements' expert, explains that some actions cannot be justified under the claim of sovereignty, such as interfering in the affairs of others, supporting opposition groups and spying. Therefore, Qatar cannot justify its rejection of the 13 demands by pledging sovereignty, Menshawy stated.
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