Days after a number of Qataris were kidnapped while hunting in Iraq, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) has condemned the act as “shameful” and a “flagrant violation of international law and human rights, Qatar News Agency (QNA) reports.
In a statement, the council’s six member expressed full solidarity with whatever actions Qatar takes regarding the incident, adding that the abduction was against Islamic provisions and harmed relations between the Arab countries.
The council also demanded that the Iraqi government take responsibility and work to secure the hunters’ release.
The statement stressed that the Qataris had entered the nation with “official permission issued by the Embassy of Iraq in Doha and approved by the Iraqi Interior Ministry.”
However, Iraq’s interior ministry said last week that “the Qatari citizens were moving in vast desert areas without abiding by the interior ministry’s instruction not to move outside the secured zones.”
According to Reuters, who quoted an unnamed police colonel, some 100 armed gunmen broke into the Qataris’ hunting camp and abducted at least 26 nationals last week.
This week, Qatar’s Ministry Of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) has said that high-ranking officials are in touch with the Iraqi government and concerned entities at the highest security and political levels in Iraq to find out details about those who were abducted and work on their immediate release, according to QNA.
One day after the Qataris were reportedly kidnapped on a hunting trip in Iraq, Al Jazeera’s Arabic channel reported that seven people in the hunting party had been released and arrived in Kuwait.
Speaking to Doha News, MOFA declined to comment on the issue.