Siege nations violate human rights: Envoy
06 Oct 2017 - 1:25
Berlin: Qatar’s Ambassador to Germany H E Sheikh Saud bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said that the siege imposed on Qatar does not only harm Qatar, but also those who have investments in the region, pointing out that the siege will have economic consequences for all.
In an interview with German magazine Der Spiegel, His Excellency said that Qatar provides 40 percent of the energy to the rest of the world. “Think of what will happen if the blockade continues for a long time,” H E Sheikh Saud bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said.
Responding to a question on whether Qatar is ready to talk about the demands made by the siege countries, he stressed the need to resolve all differences of opinion through dialogue “at the negotiating table.”
H E Sheikh Saud bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said that the siege being imposed on Qatar by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt led to human rights violations and affected Qatari families living in many Gulf countries, but belong to the same families.
He added that the siege imposed four months ago led to the expulsion of Qatari students in the region from the universities where they study, and that Qatari working in the siege countries were expelled as well, stressing at the same time that the State of Qatar still allows more than 300,000 Egyptians to live in it despite Egypt’s participation in the siege. Answering a question about the demand to close Al Jazeera, he said: “No one can attack our sovereignty. Imagine if we demanded that Germany stop the DW channel or Britain stop the BBC. This is inadmissible.” The freedom of opinion cannot be confiscated in other countries. Even if we do not know the reasons for the blockade to be precise, the freedom of opinion seems to be one of these reasons. They do not want the freedom of opinion to reach other Arab countries through Al Jazeera.”
He said the only body authorised to define the concept of terrorism is the United Nations or the Security Council, noting that it is not the right of individual States to list groups and consider them terrorists. He said Qatar “does not support Hamas nor the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, but it is not against them. We do not support them and we are not against them. Muslim Brotherhood is a party and we only deal with them when they are part of a government.”
He stressed that Iran is an important state in the region, “but we also have differences of opinion with it, it is our neighbor, we have to dialogue with it, and we have to have business relations with it. We only want to have good relations with our neighbors.”