Qatar Values OHCHR Report on Siege Countries’ Violations

The State of Qatar valued the report submitted by the UN technical mission from the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) which visited Doha between Nov. 17 and 24. The visit took place to investigate the repercussions of the siege on the human right practices and the humanitarian situation of the citizens, residents and GCC citizens who stay in Qatar.

The State of Qatar expressed its satisfaction with publishing the report which documented the human rights violations related to the siege imposed on Qatar and the GCC crisis.

Speaking at a press conference held on Wednesday, HE Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lulwah Al Khater highlighted the importance of this report lies in it being a first-time UN documentation. HE Al Khater explained there are other existing reports issued previously by non-governmental organization and described this Un report as added value.

Her Excellency praised the important role carried by the technical mission and the High Commissioner and added, when the siege on Qatar was announced on Jun. 5, the High Commissioner highlighted on Jun. 14 the need to quickly settle the crisis especially with regards to the unjust procedures that affected citizens and individuals. She also praised all the effective efforts carried out by all rights organizations.

Al Khater said the report confirms and proves the hefty financial and moral damages that fell on the citizens and residents of the State of Qatar. She added that these damages affected the citizens of the siege countries which is an important issue, especially when the siege countries are denying these damages. Her Excellency said this report proves confirms their occurrence beyond any doubt.

The Foreign Ministry Spokesperson said the report proved that the measures made by the siege countries did not differentiate between the government of the State of Qatar and the citizens and residents, as alleged by those countries. She added that this issue is essential if we take into account the claims of the siege countries that these measures are directed against the government only, which is a baseless allegation, proved in the report.

Al Khater said, the report has concluded the ongoing debate on whether it is a diplomatic blockade or a siege, adding that the report expressly stated the actions taken against the State of Qatar exceeded the limits of diplomatic procedures.

She added that it is impossible to describe those procedures as just a diplomatic blockade, because it has affected humanitarian, rights, economical and other aspects. Moreover, the report described these measures, especially the economic ones, as an "economic war," this is an issue that must be taken into consideration, HE Al Khater added.

Al Khater also said since this report is issued by a UN entity, which the siege countries are members of, they can no longer claim that the reports supporting the position of the State of Qatar are issued by non-governmental organizations and may not be recognized. Her Excellency also noted that the siege countries refused the entry of the technical missions to their countries, where she urged them to allow the missions to enter to document the violations.

Al Khater stressed that the State of Qatar will not seek retaliation for the measures taken by the siege countries. She highlighted also that the State of Qatar did not demand citizens of siege countries to leave, noting that those who were employed before the crisis broke out remain at their jobs today. She also highlighted that health services provided by the State of Qatar to citizens of the siege countries residing in Qatar during the September November period surpassed the 300,000 mark. She stressed that such a figure reflects how the State of Qatar refused to discriminate against any citizens of the siege countries, which cannot be said for the treatment citizens of the State of Qatar and even some citizens of those countries received.

HE Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lulwah Al Khater said that the report submitted by the UN technical mission from the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) documented the hate speech broadcast on the siege countries' media. She added that the report discussed some of the work produced by the siege countries which included acts of incitement against the State of Qatar.

On the measures that the State of Qatar will take, Al Khater said that the committee established to determine the damages resulting from the violations will be the legal basis for international action. That action will focus on the violations of the siege countries to agreements and contracts. She noted that the report enhances the evidence of the violations of the siege countries. She said that action by law organizations and firms have already begun. She added that the State of Qatar hopes that the issues can be resolved through diplomatic channels and dialogue, but maintained that residents and citizens whose rights have been violated deserve to have the rights back and the State of Qatar will do its utmost in that regard.

Al Khater highlighted the big role played by HH the Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah since the beginning of the crisis, saying that Qatar's appreciation was reflected in many instances including the participation of HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani in the GCC summit that took place in Kuwait. She renewed the State of Qatar's position which supports a solution based on mediation.

She noted that all lines of communications with the siege countries were still cut, expressing hope that a dialogue can take place in the future in order to resolve the situation. She stressed that all world countries support Qatar, evidenced by the improvement in ties between those countries on one side and Qatar on the other side. She also expressed hopes that ties prosper and strengthen between all countries around the world.