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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Sheikh Tamim meets Palestinian PM Shtayyeh in Qatar


Qatar repeatedly has denounced Israeli attacks on Palestinians and denied any steps toward normalising ties with Tel Aviv as long as it continues its occupation.

Qatar’s Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani met with Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh in the Amiri Diwan on Monday, state news agency [QNA] reported.

During the meeting, the two discussed the reconstruction of Gaza, the protection of the Al-Aqsa mosque, and maintaining the Qatar and Egypt-brokered ceasefire. Sheikh Tamim also echoed his country’s support to the Palestinian cause as well as the people of Palestine.

Shtayyeh also met with Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani shortly before his meeting with the Amir, where they also discussed the latest developments, including ongoing Israeli aggression against Palestinians.

Shtayyeh was accompanied with Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Maliki and government spokesman, Ibrahim Melhem.

Qatar-Palestine ties

Over the last few months, Qatar has repeatedly denounced allegations regarding normalisation with Israel, confirmed it will refuse to do so as long as Israel maintains its occupation.

More recently, Qatar’s foreign minister said steps to move toward normalising relations with the occupying state remains “unlikely”.

“We see from our point of view in Qatar, which I can comment on, that the main reason for the lack of a relationship between us and Israel is the occupation of the Palestinian territories, and the reason is still there, still valid, and there is no step or any hope toward peace yet,” the foreign minister told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Friday.

Read also: Palestinian PM Shtayyeh in Qatar for Gaza reconstruction talks

This comes just weeks after Qatar and Egypt brokered a ceasefire to put an end to the 11-day indiscriminate bombing of Gaza, where over 200 were killed. The death toll also continues to rise despite the ceasefire, with many succumbing to the injuries they sustained during the bombardment.

Qatar was also quick to send aid to Gaza, providing a $500 million aid package to help the reconstruction of the city.

However, reports stated that Tel Aviv is refusing to allow the entry of Qatari aid into the besieged seaside territory, accusing the Gulf state of funding Hamas, which it views as a terrorist organisation.

In recent weeks, senior Qatari officials as well as Hamas leaders have vehemently refuted those claims.

Qatar’s foreign minister dismissed such allegations saying “Palestinians are not only Hamas”.
“We cannot reduce the Palestinian people living under occupation and consolidate them in just one group. There are 2.1 million people living in Gaza who are in desperate humanitarian need, there are people who are suffering and suffered from this war, there have been a lot of children killed in the war,” the official said in an interview with MSNBC last month.
“I don’t think $100 per family who are in a difficult humanitarian need is a contribution to produce missiles or any weapons or supporting a group which lives there because of circumstances,” added Al Thani.

Qatar’s Assistant Foreign Minister and Spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Lolwah Al-Khater also dismissed such claims in an interview with Sky News.

“This claim is absolutely inaccurate. Whoever has been talking to you, Samantha was not saying the truth. Yes, we do exercise very, very strict measures on our aid in general. And this has been done through the UN and obviously with the approval of Israel, because to Gaza, you have two passages.. and it wasn’t going through Egypt,” the official explained.

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