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Saturday, January 16, 2021

Qatar steps up counterterrorism efforts with new UN programme office in Doha

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The country’s parliament is the first in the world to sign such an agreement.

Qatar’s Shura Council signed an agreement with the United Nations [UN] to establish the UNOCT Programme Office on Parliamentary Engagement in Preventing and Countering Terrorism in Doha.

The UNOCT office will be open for research, knowledge, and capacity-building to increase support to parliamentarians worldwide. It’s also in line with the Memorandum of Understanding signed in February to support the UN’s Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.

“Qatar is making every effort to assist parliamentarians worldwide in their noble task to save humanity from the scourge of terrorism,” said Ahmed bin Abdullah bin Zaid Al Mahmoud, speaker of Qatar’s Shura Council who also signed the agreement.

Vladimir Voronkov, under-secretary general of the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism, also joined Al Mahmoud in signing the agreement.

Qatar’s Shura Council has also announced a $12.5 million contribution to UNOCT for five years to enable the office “to manage the work of the Programme Office and administer its work and activities”, the UN statement said.

Read also: Qatar-UN meeting highlights ‘football and peace’

The Shura Council’s major contribution is also the first of its kind from a national parliament, which presented the country’s efforts in strengthen parliamentary engagement in addressing issues related to terrorism.

The joint Qatar-UN project agreement further exhibits Doha’s consistent stance to fight terror amid accusations by a Quartet of blockading countries.

In 2017, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt imposed a full land, air and sea blockade on Qatar over what they say is Doha’s support of terrorism. Qatar has vehemently rejected the charges. 


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