Qatari royal Sheikh Sultan Bin Suhaim Al Thani - Twitter
CAIRO – 18 November 2017: Hundreds of members of Al-Qahtan tribe in Saudi Arabia gathered on the border with Qatar on Friday to formulate a roadmap to face Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani’s violations against Qatar’s tribal opponents.
Social media users circulated photos and videos showing hundreds of vehicles heading to the eastern area of Saudi Arabia to support the prominent leader of Al-Qahtan tribe, Sheikh Shafi Nasser Hamoud Al-Hajri, whose Qatari nationality was recently stripped by the ruling regime. The gathering was believed to be the largest of its kind in a long time.
Footage posted on Twitter showed some protesters firing shots into the air to celebrate their successful gathering.
Qatari royal Sheikh Sultan Bin Suhaim Al Thani, a son of the first-ever foreign affairs minister of Doha, participated in the Al-Qahtan tribe meeting. The prince has boycotted the Qatari regime since the outbreak of the Gulf crisis in June. Earlier this month, he released a televised speech where he criticized the Qatari leadership’s position towards terror groups in the region.
Meanwhile, Sheikh Tamim has stripped the nationality of some Qatari tribal leaders and frozen the assets of others, including Sheikh Sultan; Sheikh Talib bin Mohamed Bin Lahoum Bin Sherim, leader of Al-Murra tribe; and Sheikh Abdullah bin Ali Al-Thani, a member of the Qatari royal family.
Al-Qahtan is a large tribe located in southern Saudi Arabia (where most of the tribe is congregated), Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
In light of the growing concern that the country may witness a tribal revolution to overthrow the current regime, Sheikh Tamim has put the tribesmen under security and economic pressure using Qatari state institutions.
The pressure exerted by Sheikh Tamim's intelligence and security agencies came after a number of senior tribal leaders in Saudi Arabia stressed their support for the Gulf blockade imposed on Qatar.
Qatar has been hit by its biggest diplomatic crisis in years after multiple Arab nations, including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain, cut ties with Qatar, accusing it of destabilizing the region with its support for Islamist groups.
The Arab quartet halted all land, air and sea traffic with Qatar, and withdrew their diplomats and ambassadors from the Qatari peninsula. The Arab quartet issued 13 demands to Doha – then shortened to six principles - including closing Al Jazeera television, curbing relations with Iran and shutting down a Turkish military base.