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Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Qatar seeks to provide ‘platform for dialogue’ between adversaries: FM


Qatar has become a hub for dispute resolutions and mediation between world powers. 

Doha has stressed the importance of dialogue to achieve stability in the Middle East and reach common grounds in resolving current political issues on the regional and international level.  

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani confirmed in a recent TV appearance that his country remains committed to continue efforts towards achieving stability and security in the region amid intensifying crises. 

In order to overcome these types of crises and stabilise the region, I think we need to intensify our efforts in dialogue and engagement and in addressing the root causes of these crises which are mainly social and economic,” the FM said, during a virtual appearance at the Rome MED Conference.

The official referred to dialogues hosted by Qatar between different Afghan parties amid the crisis in the war-torn country, as well as between the United States and the Taliban during the past few years, which subsequently led to the end of the 20-year war.

“Qatar is trying to play its role within the region and beyond that by introducing Qatar as a platform for dialogue and engagement between the different adversaries and also to extend our help and support to other countries in the region by providing better opportunities especially for the youth in our region,” he added. 

The Qatari FM emphasised that the Gulf state continues to act as an important mediator that believes positive participation and dialogue are the right avenues towards resolution and stability. 

Read also: Qatar FM says ‘unfair’ to punish Afghans in need of humanitarian assistance for Taliban takeover

On the situation in Afghanistan, Sheikh Mohammed urged the international community to adopt a “clear strategy” in dealing with the current situation in war-torn Afghanistan to address humanitarian, political and economic concerns. 

He also reiterated the need to avoid linking humanitarian assistance and support to Kabul with any political progress, noting it is “unfair to punish the Afghan people because of the Taliban takeover.”

Qatar considers the Russian Federation an important partner in achieving security and stability in Afghanistan, the FM said, pointing out that the geographical factor allows what is happening in Afghanistan to affect neighboring countries, such as Russia and the People’s Republic of China which are close to Afghanistan.

For this reason, it is essential to address their concerns in the existing dialogue with Afghanistan. 

Hub for dispute resolution

Qatar has been acting as a hub for dispute resolutions, exerting efforts in mediating between rivals in the region and beyond.

Most recently, Doha promised to mediate between Lebanon and some Gulf states amid growing tensions. The Lebanese Republic has faced a diplomatic rift with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Kuwait over comments made by now Minister of Information George Kordahi.

Ahead of his appointment as a government official, Kordahi criticised the Saudi-led coalition’s military intervention in Yemen, describing the war as “futile” and saying it is “about time for it to end.”

Despite sharing his opinions as a civilian at the time, the later-resurfaced remarks triggered fury across the Gulf Cooperation Council that quickly transformed into a diplomatic crisis between the bloc and Beirut.

Earlier, Qatar welcomed Lebanon’s president Michel Aoun in Doha as per an invitation from Amir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani on the occasion of the first ever FIFA Arab Cup 2021.

Aoun’s media advisor, Rafeeq Chelala told Doha News earlier that a visit by the Qatari foreign minister to Beirut is expected soon “to follow up on what was discussed between me and His Highness the amir, and to see what Qatar can offer to help Lebanon as well as discuss the latest developments.”

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