The conference was organized in great secrecy due to of concerns over Qatari government’s and its supporters’ interference – File Photo
CAIRO – 14 September 2017: The Qatari opposition held in London a conference on Thursday titled “Qatar Global Security and Stability” where members of parliament, and former state officials from different countries had the floor to analyze the recent Qatari crisis along with victims of the regime unveiling their suffering.
Remarks of opposition leader Kaled Al Hail:
The main organizer, Qatari businessman and reformist Khalid Al-Hail, inaugurated the conference saying: “The support we have received from some of the most respected and high-profile commentators on the Middle East, World Affairs and the media demonstrates the level of concern there is inside and outside Qatar about the current direction of the leadership of the country.”
Al Hail stated that the Qatari regime attempted to inhibit the conference, which stresses on the necessity of changing the regime for its support for terror, through bribes and media campaigns.
“That will not be an easy mission. The ruling regime in Qatar deprived many citizens of their citizenship and detained others,” Al Hail said describing the conference as a “turning point in the future of Qatar.”
In a panel discussion, Al Hail accused Iran of smuggling drugs into Qatar which opened its markets for Iran and Turkey following the boycott and embargo decisions of the quartet countries.
The tragedy of oppositionists:
“I am Mohamed bin Hamad Jalal Al Marri. I belong to Al Ghufran tribe that is a branch of Al Morra tribe,” an exiled Qatari citizen said in the Qatar Global Security and Stability said on Thursday.
Al Marri proceeds, “Our tribe comprises many military officers, summing up to 200, including my father, who has been thrown in jail and tortured for upholding their oath of allegiance to Sheikh Khalifa bin Hamad Al-Thani who was toppled by a coup de palais led by his son in 1995.”
Al Marri added that the regime took away the nationality of many of his tribe members, and exiled them. “They were prevented from seeking health care, or receiving education. My mother suffered from cancer and I could not visit her before she died,” he stated.
Officials affirm Qatar’s support to terror:
British Member of Parliament Daniel Kawczynski said that terrorism funding cannot happen without the knowledge of governments, and that the West realizes that local entities in the Middle East fund terror.
Kawczynski questioned how a small state like Qatar attempts to disrupt the unity of Gulf States.
“We do not like the fact that Qatar supports Nusra Front in Syria, the Muslim Brotherhood, and Hamas. It is allied with Iran which claims that Bahrain is part of its territories. It supports the Houthis in Yemen,” American businessman Dov S. Zakheim, who served in the Reagan administration at the Department of Defense, said.
“Iran is providing Qatar an edge to break the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). If Qatar thinks that would give it prominence, it is wrong. Qatar and Iran are playing each other,” Zakheim said.
Lord Paddy Ashdown, Ambassador Bill Richardson, Iain Duncan Smith, John Simpson, Jamie Rubin, General Chuck Wald, Brigadier General Shlomo Brom, Dov Zakheim and MP Daniel Kawczynski joined leading Middle East commentators and members of the Qatari opposition to debate the past, present and likely future of Qatar.
The conference, organized in great secrecy due to concerns over Qatari government’s and its supporters’ interference, has attracted a line-up of world renowned speakers, including the former U.S. Ambassador to the UN, an ex-British Cabinet Minister, advisors to the Israeli and U.S. governments and leading media and strategic commentators.
On June 5, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain cut diplomatic ties with Qatar over its support for terror. Other states have followed, including Yemen, Libya, Maldives, Comoros, Mauritania, Djibouti and Chad.
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