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Qatar and state-sponsored terrorism

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Qatar has been accused of allowing terror financiers to operate within its borders, which has been one of the justifications for the Qatar diplomatic crisis that started in 2017 and ended in 2021. In 2014, David S. Cohen, then United States Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, accused Qatari authorities of allowing financiers who were on international blacklists to live freely in the country: "There are U.S.- and UN-designated terrorist financiers in Qatar that have not been acted against under Qatari law."[1] Accusations come from a wide variety of sources including intelligence reports, government officials, and journalists.

In response to these allegations, the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, in September 2014 went on US television to defend his government against claims that it harbors terrorist financiers. In an interview with Christiane Amanpour on CNN, the Emir stated he does not consider those organizations to be terrorists.[2]

The Qatari government has a designated terrorist list.[3] According to The Telegraph, the list contained no names in 2014.[4] In July 2021, the list contained more than 550 people and 240 entities.[3] Qatar uses it to vet passengers flying internationally.[5] Despite Qatar's efforts to arraign prominent terrorist financiers, some designated terrorists and terrorist financiers lived with impunity in Qatar[4] until 2015.[5]

Qatar has been accused of supporting Hamas, the Palestinian group designated as a terrorist organization by a number of countries.[6] Qatar denies these allegations, stating that it does not support Hamas' political position, and that its policy is to help facilitate constructive engagement between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority.[7]

In 2004, 2010, 2014, and 2017, the Qatari government introduced new anti-terror laws to combat terrorism, terrorism financing and related crimes.[5][8] In 2019 the Qatari government introduced a new anti-money laundering and counter terror financing laws.[9]

Discover more about Qatar and state-sponsored terrorism related topics

Qatar

Qatar

Qatar, officially the State of Qatar, is a country in Western Asia. It occupies the Qatar Peninsula on the northeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula in the Middle East; it shares its sole land border with Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its territory surrounded by the Persian Gulf. The Gulf of Bahrain, an inlet of the Persian Gulf, separates Qatar from nearby Bahrain. The capital is Doha, home to over 80% of the country's inhabitants, and the land area is mostly made up of flat, low-lying desert.

Terrorism financing

Terrorism financing

Terrorism financing is the provision of funds or providing financial support to individual terrorists or non-state actors.

Qatar diplomatic crisis

Qatar diplomatic crisis

The Qatar diplomatic crisis was a diplomatic incident in the Middle East that began on 5 June 2017 when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt severed diplomatic relations with Qatar and banned Qatar-registered planes and ships from utilising their airspace and sea routes, along with Saudi Arabia blocking Qatar’s only land crossing. The crisis ended in January 2021 following a resolution between Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

David S. Cohen (attorney)

David S. Cohen (attorney)

David Samuel Cohen is an American attorney who serves as the deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) since January 20, 2021. He also served as acting Director of the Central Intelligence Agency from January to March 2021. He previously occupied the role of deputy director from February 9, 2015 to January 20, 2017. Originally from Boston, Cohen previously worked at the U.S. Treasury Department and as an attorney in private practice. At the Treasury, among other posts, he served as the under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence where he gained the nickname of "sanctions guru".

Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani

Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani

Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani is the Emir of Qatar.

Christiane Amanpour

Christiane Amanpour

Christiane Maria Heideh Amanpour is a British-Iranian journalist and television host. Amanpour is the Chief International Anchor for CNN and host of CNN International's nightly interview program Amanpour. She is also the host of Amanpour & Company on PBS.

CNN

CNN

CNN is a multinational cable news channel headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. Founded in 1980 by American media proprietor Ted Turner and Reese Schonfeld as a 24-hour cable news channel, and presently owned by the Manhattan-based media conglomerate Warner Bros. Discovery, CNN was the first television channel to provide 24-hour news coverage and the first all-news television channel in the United States.

Hamas

Hamas

Hamas is a Palestinian Sunni-Islamic fundamentalist, militant, and nationalist organization. It has a social service wing, Dawah, and a military wing, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades. It won the 2006 Palestinian legislative election and became the de facto governing authority of the Gaza Strip following the 2007 Battle of Gaza. It also holds a majority in the parliament of the Palestinian National Authority.

Palestinian National Authority

Palestinian National Authority

The Palestinian National Authority, commonly known as the Palestinian Authority and officially the State of Palestine, is the Fatah-controlled government body that exercises partial civil control over West Bank areas "A" and "B" as a consequence of the 1993–1995 Oslo Accords. The Palestinian Authority controlled the Gaza Strip prior to the Palestinian elections of 2006 and the subsequent Gaza conflict between the Fatah and Hamas parties, when it lost control to Hamas; the PA continues to claim the Gaza Strip, although Hamas exercises de facto control. Since January 2013, the Palestinian Authority has used the name "State of Palestine" on official documents, although the United Nations continues to recognize the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) as the "representative of the Palestinian people".

Politics of Qatar

Politics of Qatar

The political system of Qatar is a semi-constitutional monarchy with the emir as head of state and chief executive, and the prime minister as the head of government. Under the Constitution of Qatar, the partially-elected Consultative Assembly has a limited ability to reject legislation and dismiss ministers. The first general election was held in 2021.

Anti-terrorism legislation

Anti-terrorism legislation

Anti-terrorism legislation are laws with the purpose of fighting terrorism. They usually, if not always, follow specific bombings or assassinations. Anti-terrorism legislation usually includes specific amendments allowing the state to bypass its own legislation when fighting terrorism-related crimes, under alleged grounds of necessity.

Money laundering

Money laundering

Money laundering is the process of illegally concealing the origin of money, obtained from illicit activities such as drug trafficking, corruption, embezzlement or gambling, by converting it into a legitimate source. It is a crime in many jurisdictions with varying definitions. It is usually a key operation of organized crime.

Background

Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani with U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel
Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani with U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel

In 2003, the U.S. Congress was made aware that a plethora of charities based in Qatar were supporting al-Qaeda's activities by helping move and launder funds for the terrorist group.[10][11] In 2010, it was reported that the violence in Afghanistan and Pakistan was partly bankrolled by wealthy, conservative donors across the Arabian Sea whose governments do little to stop them.[12] Other Arab countries which were listed as sources of militant money were Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates.[12][13] In December 2013, the United States designated a Qatari citizen, Abd Al-Rahman al-Nuaimi, as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT). The U.S. Treasury Department placed sanctions on Nuaymi and declared him a "Qatar-based terrorist financier and facilitator who has provided money and material support and conveyed communications to al-Qa'ida and its affiliates in Syria, Iraq, Somalia and Yemen for more than a decade."[14]

Furthermore, in an August 2014 op-ed published in The New York Times entitled "Club Med for Terrorists", Ron Prosor, then Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations, alleged that Qatar sought to improve its global image by funding prominent foreign universities in Doha and hosting the 2022 World Cup while simultaneously supporting Hamas, al-Qaeda, and the Muslim Brotherhood.[15]

In December 2014, Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA) and Congressman Peter Roskam (R-IL) requested that the U.S. government, in a letter to the Secretary of the Treasury, impose sanctions on Qatar. The two congressmen asked for a full report on activities within Qatar from individuals, charities and organizations that fund Hamas, ISIS, Al-Qaeda, and the al-Nusra Front.[1][16] The State Department responded to the lawmakers' letters by stating that the US has a "productive relationship with Qatar", pointing out that Qatar has improved its counter-terrorism efforts in past years, although it conceded that Qatar's monitoring and prosecution of terrorist financiers and charities has remained "inconsistent".[17]

In 2014, Qatar introduced new laws for charities and cybercrime prevention. Since 2014, all projects and international bank transfers of Qatari charities need authorization by the government's independent Charities Commission, which controls charitable giving to prevent misuse of donations and terrorism financing.[5][18]

In December 2014, 24 members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee signed a letter suggesting that Qatar and Turkey be subject to U.S. sanctions if their governments keep turning a blind eye to terror finance.[19]

The Country Report on Terrorism 2015 released by the U.S. State Department on June 2, 2016 remarks that, in spite of Qatar's nominal membership and engagement in a number of counterterrorism and terror finance initiatives, "entities and individuals within Qatar continue to serve as a source of financial support for terrorist and violent extremist groups, particularly regional al-Qa'ida affiliates such as the Nusra Front". The State Department also noted Qatar's maintenance of an active watchlist of terrorist suspects, and stated that the country had made efforts to arraign prominent terrorist financiers. Furthermore, the report mentioned Qatar's restructuring of its National Anti-Terrorism Committee and recent enactment of counter-terrorism laws.[5]

In October 2016, following a cyberattack attributed to the Russian cyber spying group Fancy Bear,[20] one of the leaked Podesta emails from August 2014, addressed to John Podesta, accused Qatar and Saudi Arabia of providing "clandestine," "financial and logistic" aid to ISIL and other "radical Sunni groups." The email outlined a plan of action against ISIL, and urged putting pressure on Qatar and Saudi Arabia to end their alleged support for the group.[21][22][23] Whether the email was originally written by Hillary Clinton, her advisor Sidney Blumenthal, another person, or the hackers is unclear.[24][25]

Former US Defense Secretary Robert Gates stated in May 2017 that he doesn't "know instances in which Qatar aggressively goes after (terror finance) networks of Hamas, Taliban, Al-Qaeda."[26]

In a press conference on June 9, 2017, US President Trump backed Saudi Arabia and its allies in their diplomatic spat with Qatar, stating that Qatar has historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high level, and encouraging the countries to continue their blockade. He contradicted secretary of state Rex Tillerson, who asked the quartet to moderate its blockade on Qatar as it was harming US operations against ISIL.[27]

In July 2017, the US and Qatar signed a memorandum of understanding to combat the financing of terrorism, making Qatar the first country in the region to sign the executive program with the United States to fight terrorism financing.[28]

In April 2018, US President Trump welcomed Sheikh Tamim Al Thani to the White House and described him as "big advocate" of combating terrorist financing.[29] In November 2018, Qatar started to participate in a 3-year United States Department of State Anti-Terrorism Assistance (ATA) program.[30]

In December 2020, the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT) in cooperation with Qatar established the International Hub on Behavioral Insights to Counter Terrorism as an UNOCT Programme Office in Doha.[31][32] In June 2021, a second UNOCT Programme Office on Parliamentary Engagement in Preventing and Countering Terrorism was established.[33][34]

In September 2021, the government of Qatar and the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)[35] imposed sanctions against a major Hezbollah financial network based in the Arabian Peninsula.[36]

Qatar is a member of the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force (MENAFATF), an associated body of the Financial Action Task Force.[37]

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Chuck Hagel

Chuck Hagel

Charles Timothy Hagel is an American military veteran and former politician who served as a United States senator from Nebraska from 1997 to 2009 and as the 24th United States secretary of defense from 2013 to 2015 in the Obama administration.

Al-Qaeda

Al-Qaeda

Al-Qaeda is a Sunni pan-Islamist militant organisation led by Salafi jihadists who self-identify as a vanguard spearheading a global Islamist revolution to unite the Muslim world under a supra-national Islamic state known as the Caliphate. Its members are mostly composed of Arabs, but also include other peoples. Al-Qaeda has mounted attacks on civilian and military targets in various countries, including the 1998 United States embassy bombings, the 2001 September 11 attacks, and the 2002 Bali bombings; it has been designated as a terrorist group by the United Nations Security Council, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the European Union, and various other countries around the world.

Afghanistan

Afghanistan

Afghanistan, officially the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central Asia and South Asia. Referred to as the Heart of Asia, it is bordered by Pakistan to the east and south, Iran to the west, Turkmenistan to the northwest, Uzbekistan to the north, Tajikistan to the northeast, and China to the northeast and east. Occupying 652,864 square kilometers (252,072 sq mi) of land, the country is predominantly mountainous with plains in the north and the southwest, which are separated by the Hindu Kush mountain range. As of 2021, its population is 40.2 million, composed mostly of ethnic Pashtuns, Tajiks, Hazaras, and Uzbeks. Kabul is the country's largest city and serves as its capital.

Pakistan

Pakistan

Pakistan, officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's fifth-most populous country, with a population of almost 243 million people, and has the world's second-largest Muslim population just behind Indonesia. Pakistan is the 33rd-largest country in the world by area and 2nd largest in South Asia, spanning 881,913 square kilometres. It has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the south, and is bordered by India to the east, Afghanistan to the west, Iran to the southwest, and China to the northeast. It is separated narrowly from Tajikistan by Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor in the north, and also shares a maritime border with Oman. Islamabad is the nation's capital, while Karachi is its largest city and financial centre.

Abd Al-Rahman al-Nuaimi

Abd Al-Rahman al-Nuaimi

Abd Al-Rahman al-Nuaimi or Abderrahman Al Nuaimi is a Qatari human rights advocate and co-founder of the Alkarama human rights NGO. He previously taught Islamic Studies at Qatar University, and once served as president of the Qatar Football Association, as well as having been a board member of Qatar Islamic Bank. He has been accused of being “one of the world’s most prolific terrorist financiers.”

Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations

Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations

The Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations is the de facto Israel Ambassador to the United Nations, with the rank and status of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.

Brad Sherman

Brad Sherman

Bradley James Sherman is an American accountant and politician serving as the U.S. representative for California's 32nd congressional district. A member of the Democratic Party, he first entered Congress in 1997; Sherman represented California's 24th congressional district for three terms, California's 27th congressional district for five terms, and California's 30th congressional district for five terms. His district is in the San Fernando Valley, in Los Angeles County, as well as the eastern part of the Simi Hills in Ventura County. He resides in Sherman Oaks.

Cybercrime

Cybercrime

A cybercrime is a crime that involves a computer or a computer network. The computer may have been used in committing the crime, or it may be the target. Cybercrime may harm someone's security or finances.

Al-Nusra Front

Al-Nusra Front

Al-Nusra Front or Jabhat al-Nusra, known as Jabhat Fatah al-Sham after July 2016, and also described as al-Qaeda in Syria or al-Qaeda in the Levant, was a Salafist jihadist terrorist organization fighting against Syrian government forces in the Syrian Civil War. Its aim was to establish an Islamic state in the country. The group has changed its name several times and merged with and separated from other groups.

Cyberattack

Cyberattack

A cyberattack is any offensive maneuver that targets computer information systems, computer networks, infrastructures, or personal computer devices. An attacker is a person or process that attempts to access data, functions, or other restricted areas of the system without authorization, potentially with malicious intent. Depending on the context, cyberattacks can be part of cyber warfare or cyberterrorism. A cyberattack can be employed by sovereign states, individuals, groups, societies or organisations and it may originate from an anonymous source. A product that facilitates a cyberattack is sometimes called a cyber weapon. Cyber attacks have increased with an alarming rate for the last few years

Cyber spying

Cyber spying

Cyber spying, or cyber espionage, is the act or practice of obtaining secrets and information without the permission and knowledge of the holder of the information from individuals, competitors, rivals, groups, governments and enemies for personal, economic, political or military advantage using methods on the Internet, networks or individual computers through the use of proxy servers, cracking techniques and malicious software including Trojan horses and spyware. It may wholly be perpetrated online from computer desks of professionals on bases in far away countries or may involve infiltration at home by computer trained conventional spies and moles or in other cases may be the criminal handiwork of amateur malicious hackers and software programmers.

Fancy Bear

Fancy Bear

Fancy Bear is a Russian cyber espionage group. Cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike has said with a medium level of confidence that it is associated with the Russian military intelligence agency GRU. The UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office as well as security firms SecureWorks, ThreatConnect, and Mandiant, have also said the group is sponsored by the Russian government. In 2018, an indictment by the United States Special Counsel identified Fancy Bear as GRU Unit 26165.

Activities of various groups in Qatar

Al-Qaeda

Jamal Ahmed al-Fadl, Osama bin Laden's former business agent, defected to the United States in 1996, and testified to the 9/11 Commission and Congress, that Bin Laden told him in 1993 that the Qatar Charitable Society (QCS), (later renamed Qatar Charity) was one of Bin Laden's several sources of funding.[38]

In 2003, The New York Times wrote:.[39]

"Private support from prominent Qataris to Al Qaeda is a sensitive issue that is said to infuriate George J. Tenet, the director of central intelligence. After the Sept. 11 attacks, another senior Qaeda operative, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, who may have been the principal planner of the assault on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, was said by Saudi intelligence officials to have spent two weeks in late 2001 hiding in Qatar, with the help of prominent patrons, after he escaped from Kuwait."

Khalifa Muhammad Turki al-Subaiy and Abd al-Rahman bin Umayr al-Nuaymi are senior-level financiers of al-Qaeda. Al-Subaiy was a previous employee of the Qatar Central Bank. In 2014, U.S. Treasury Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, David Cohen, announced that the two men were living freely in Qatar. Both men were on a worldwide terrorist blacklist.[4] The two men were tried and acquitted; the "apparent reasons" for which, according to Sigurd Neubauer in The National Interest, were "tied to" Qatari intelligence being unable to demonstrate evidence without "compromising its intelligence gathering capabilities".[40] In response to Cohen's announcement and the release of the U.S. intelligence report, reporters from The Telegraph contacted Qatari officials. According to the Telegraph, "Qatar has refused to answer".[4]

At one time, Al-Nuaymi was the president of the Qatar Football Association. The U.S. report said that he sent more than 1.25 million British pounds per month to Al-Qaeda jihadist fighters in Iraq. He sent hundreds of thousands of pounds to fighters in Syria. The United States designated Al-Nuaymi as a terrorist in 2013. Britain sanctioned him in 2014.[4]

Al-Nuaymi is knowingly associated with Abd al-Wahhab Muhammad 'Abd al-Rahman Al-Humayqani, a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) whom the US Treasury sanctioned in 2013 for his role as fundraiser and executive for al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).[41] The US Treasury claimed that in 2012 Al-Nuaymi supported financially a charity directed by Humayqani. By exploiting his status in the charitable community, Humayqani allegedly raised funds and facilitated transfers from al-Qaeda supporters based in Saudi Arabia to Yemen. Reportedly Humayqani had high level connections with al-Qaeda top operatives and often acted as an AQAP representative while meeting with Yemeni authorities. On behalf of AQAP, he allegedly recruited individuals for several murderous attacks in Yemen, and personally directed a "group of armed AQAP associates that intended to carry out attacks on Yemeni government facilities and institutions, including a Yemeni government building in al-Bayda Governorate".[42]

About ten months after being sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury, Nuaimi was also restrained from doing business in the UK.[41] Al-Subaiy and Al-Nuaymi have close ties to senior leaders in the Qatari government. Robert Medick, a reporter for The Telegraph's "Stop the Funding of Terror" campaign, wrote in 2014 that Qatar "turned a blind eye to terrorist financiers operating within their midst".[4]

According to the 9/11 Commission Report, Subayi also provided financial support to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, a Pakistani al-Qaeda senior officer purported to be one of the architects of the 9/11 attacks.

On August 4, 2015 the US Treasury sanctioned Qatari citizen Abd al-Latif Bin Abdallah Salih Muhammad al-Kawari for his alleged support to al-Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan. According to the Treasury's designation, al-Kawari had worked with al-Qaeda facilitators since the early 2000s in his role as financier and security official for the terrorist group. Al-Kawari is also reported to have worked with US and UN terrorist designated al-Qaeda affiliates Mustafa Hajji Muhammad Khan and Ibrahim Isa Haji Muhammad al-Bakr to have funds delivered to al-Qaeda operatives in Pakistan.[43] In 2012, al-Kawari allegedly coordinated "the delivery of funding from Qatari financiers intended to support al-Qaida and to deliver receipts confirming that al-Qaida received foreign donor funding from Qatar-based extremists".[43] He also provided assistance to an al-Qaeda courier who was transporting several thousands of dollars to al-Qaeda's officials.[43]

Furthermore, Qatar Charity, Qatar's largest NGO, has played a key role in funneling financial support to al-Qaeda. Legal proceedings from the trial United States vs. Enaam M. Arnaout report that in 1993 Osama Bin Laden mentioned Qatar Charity as one of the preferred channels to funnel financial support to al-Qaeda operatives overseas. Former Qatar Charity employee and al-Qaeda defector al-Fadl confirmed the affiliation between al-Qaeda and the Qatari Charity. Al-Fadl declared to have personally cooperated with Qatar Charity's director in the late 1990s, Abdullah Mohammed Yusef, who was affiliated to al-Qaeda and also engaged in the National Islamic Front, a Sudanese political group that protected Osama Bin Laden.[44][45] The Consortium Against Terrorist Finance reported that Qatar Charity also channeled funds to Chechnya-based al-Qaeda operatives in 1999, as well as to Ansar Dine in North Mali.[44][46]

During the 2011 Libyan revolution that ousted Muammar Gaddafi, Qatar provided financial and material support amounting to "millions of dollars in aid, military training and more than 20,000 tons of weapons" to anti-Gaddafi rebels, which was channeled through few key figures, some of which tied to al-Qaeda.[47] In particular, Abdelhakim Belhadj, a Libyan politician and military leader who directed the defunct, UN terrorist designated Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) during the 2011 revolution, was among the Qatar-backed key players in Libya and the recipient of several Qatar-paid shipments.[47][48] Several members of the group, which had tried to overthrow Gaddafi since 1994, had solid ties to al-Qaeda.[48] Belhadj reportedly followed Bin Laden when he moved al-Qaeda headquarters in Sudan in 1996. Furthermore, the UN Security Council claimed that LIFG contributed to "the financing, planning, facilitating, preparing or perpetrating of acts or activities by, in conjunction with, under the name of, on behalf or in support of" al-Qaeda, its leader, and the Taliban.[49]

Jabhat Al-Nusra

Qatar has sponsored al-Qaeda's affiliate in Syria, the al-Nusra Front,[50][51] since 2013.[46] The jihadist group, established within the framework of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's plans for an Islamic State in the Levant, has parted ways from ISIS in 2013 due to leadership conflicts.[52] The group was designated as terrorist entity by the UN, the EU, Canada, the U.S., Israel, Hong Kong, Switzerland, and Australia. Nonetheless, Qatar has continuously supported it through ransom payments and fundraising campaigns as a strategic ally in Syria, committed to depose Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.[10][53][52][54]

Qatar has acted as mediator for the release of prisoners held by al-Nusra on several occasions, most notably in the case of the 45 UN Fijian peacekeepers kidnapped in August 2014 and in the December 2015 prisoner swap between al-Nusra and the Lebanese government.[55][56][57] Qatar has also paid conspicuous ransoms – ranging from few million to hundreds of million dollars- to return hostages kept by al-Nusra.[46][56]

In addition to ransom payments, the Qatar government as well as Qatari citizens have sponsored large-scale fundraising campaigns to solicit "support for the procurement of weapons, food and supplies for al-Nusra in Syria" which have often relied on social media.[54] "Madid Ahl al-Sham", a fundraising campaign launched in 2013 and shut down by Qatari authorities only in 2015, became "one of the preferred conduits for donations intended for the group".[54][58]

In 2013 Madid Ahl al-Sham was expanded to collect weapons, as announced in a May 2013 Facebook posting.[59][60][61] Several prominent figures, from Egyptian cleric Wagdy Ghoneim to wealthy Qatari Abdulaziz bin Khalifa al-Attiyah, overtly endorsed the campaign on their social media profiles.[54][59][60][61] However, the success of the campaign was largely ascribed to its direct coordinators from 2013 to 2015, Sa'ad bin Sa'ad Mohammed Shariyan al-Ka'bi and Abd al-Latif Bin 'Abdullah Salih Muhammad al-Kuwari.[54] Al-Ka'bi is a Qatari citizen designated by the US Treasury as a terrorist financier who also acted as an intermediary for collecting ransom for hostage exchange with al-Nusra in August 2015.[43][62] Al-Kawari, another Qatar-based financier and lead actor in Madid Ahl al-Sham, was also designated by the US Treasury for collecting financial support for al-Qaeda and for his role as "an al-Qaida security official".[43] U.S. officials also reported that al-Kuwari closely cooperated with Qatar-based Abdallah Ghanim Mafuz Muslim al-Khawar to "deliver money, messages and other material support to al-Qa'ida elements in Iran", who also facilitated jihadists to travel to Afghanistan.[62] The Qatari government did not arrest the two terrorist financiers after the Treasury's designation, and they both continued to live with impunity in the country[62][63] until 2015 when the Qatari government froze their assets and imposed travel bans on them.[5]

ISIS

In November 2014, the U.S. Treasury Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, David Cohen, described Qatar as operating an environment that is tolerant of terrorism financing.[4]

U.S. counterterrorism officials have said that donations from countries outside the U.S. have been a traditional source of financing for terrorism. A small part of ISIS's financing operations comes from such donations.[64]

Abdul Karim al-Thani, a member of Qatar's royal family, ran a safe house for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the founder of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, the predecessor to ISIS. Al-Thani gave Qatari passports out and put $1 million into a bank account to finance AQI.[39]

Abd al Rahman al Nuaymi, a Qatari citizen, worked as a go-between of ISIS's predecessor, Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), with donors to AQI from Qatar.[65]

More rumors about Qatar's alleged cooperation with ISIS affiliates surfaced in early 2015. On February 11, 2015 Sudan Tribune reported controversial statements by Yahia Sadam, an official of the Minni Minnawi Sudanese liberation movement who accused Qatar of endorsing the genocide perpetrated by Sudanese militiamen in Darfur by funneling money though the Sudanese branch of Qatar Charity, active in Darfur since 2010.[44][66][67] Sadam claimed that Qatar Charity, which has purportedly signed a cooperation agreement with the Sudanese troops, was "building housing complexes in remote and isolated areas to harbor and train extremist groups".[44][67] Those camps are believed to be hosting ISIS fighters, a concern voiced by attendees from the intelligence community at a March 2015 event at the United States Institute for Peace.[44][68]

In February 2015, Egypt–Qatar relations deteriorated after the Egyptian Air Force conducted airstrikes on suspected ISIL positions in neighboring Libya following the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians.[69][70] The airstrikes were condemned by Al Jazeera, who broadcast images of civilian casualties.[70] Additionally, Qatar's foreign ministry expressed reservations over the airstrikes. This prompted Tariq Adel, Egypt's Arab League delegate, to accuse Qatar of supporting terrorism. Egyptian citizens also launched an online campaign denouncing the Qatari government.[71] The Gulf Cooperation Council rejected Egypt's accusations and its secretary general regarded the statements to be false.[72] Shortly after, Qatar recalled its ambassador to Egypt for "consultations".[71]

In 2017 the government of Qatar sentenced 25 ISIL sympathizers, most of them Qatari citizens, to life in prison, with a minimum term of 25 years.[73]

Hamas

A number of countries have designated Hamas in all its parts a terrorist organisation. These countries include Israel, the United States, Canada, the European Union, and Egypt. Some other countries designate only the Hamas military wing, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, a terrorist organisation. In December 2013, Egypt designated the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization. Hamas, as an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, was in February 2015 also declared a terrorist organization. In June 2015, an Egyptian appeals court overturned the designation.[74]

More money flows from Qatar to Hamas than any other country.[65]

In 2014, Qatar had pledged $400 million to Hamas.[75]

In September 2014, Congress held a hearing about the role of Turkey and Qatar in terrorist financing. Top Democrats and Republicans at the hearing gave tough words to Qatar. Congressman Ted Deutch (D-FL) said:[6]

"Relationships with some of these countries are complicated . . . Support for Hamas is not complicated, and our response to their support for Hamas should not be complicated either."

Congressman Ted Poe (R-TX) said:[6]

"We must make our message clear: If you help finance Hamas, there will be significant consequences and they will be unpleasant. I hope Qatar and Turkey are listening."

John Kerry standing with the Foreign Ministers of Turkey and Qatar during the 2014 Israel–Gaza conflict cease-fire negotiations
John Kerry standing with the Foreign Ministers of Turkey and Qatar during the 2014 Israel–Gaza conflict cease-fire negotiations

Qatar has continuously hosted Hamas politburo since 2012, when Khaled Meshal, Hamas' political leader, fled Syria for Qatar. However, Meshal had already found harbor in Qatar in the late 1990s, before he moved to Damascus in 2001. Over the past decades, Qatar has also offered shelter to several prominent Hamas affiliates: from Saleh al-Arouri, the founder of Hamas' military wing, Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, known for his ability to mastermind attacks from abroad who was reportedly hosted by Qatar after leaving Turkey in December 2015, to Husam Badran, the former leader of a Hamas cell and the current media spokesperson for Hamas who instigated several deadly suicide bombings during the Second Intifada and is based in Qatar since 2011.[76][77][78][79] Along with Turkey, Qatar was the only country that endorsed Hamas for ousting the Palestinian Authority from the Gaza Strip in 2007.[80] Shortly after, Qatar publicly pledged $250 million in aid for Gaza, devastated after the Israeli war, and soon rose as a lead actor in the Palestinian conflict.[80] The relation between the Gulf country and the terrorist group was reinforced especially between 2008 and 2009 after several expression of mutual support, and especially after Qatar condemned the Gaza blockade.[80][81]

Former Qatari Emir Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani was the first head of state who visited Gaza after Hamas took power, in 2012. On that occasion, the Qatari ruler announced that Qatar would have devolved $400 million for aid and reconstruction works. So far, Qatar has disbursed over $1 billion to the rebuilding efforts, thereby ranking as the biggest donor for the Gaza strip.[80][81]

However, attempts to smuggle dual-use substances that could be used to produce explosives into Gaza have been detected and reported more and more frequently over the past years, and have raised concerns that foreign aid directed to the Gaza strip may be used by Qatar to finance Hamas.[82][83]

In July 2017, former CIA director David Petraeus revealed that Qatar has hosted the Hamas leadership at the request of US.[84][85][86]

Accusations of supporting extremist groups in Iraq

In 2014, former Prime Minister of Iraq Nouri al-Maliki stated that Qatar and Saudi Arabia started the civil wars in Iraq and Syria, and incited and encouraged terrorist movements, like Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and al-Qaeda, supporting them politically and in the media, with money and by buying weapons for them.[87]

Allegations of Qatari sponsoring of Terrorism in Libya

Qatar was involved in Libya's civil war in 2011 as part of the multi-state NATO-led coalition, mainly by arming and funding groups fighting to topple the dictator Gaddafi. According to the Releifweb Libya had unavoidably been affected by the diplomatic crisis in the Middle East that had pitted a coalition of Arab nations against Qatar. [88] The House of Representatives (HoR) and Khalifa Haftar's anti-Islamist Libyan National Army (LNA) are supported by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Egypt, while Qatar and (to a lesser extent) Turkey support the Presidency Council/Government of National Accord, which is based in Tripoli and is recognized by the UN (GNA). [89]

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Jamal al-Fadl

Jamal al-Fadl

Jamal Ahmed al-Fadl is a Sudanese militant and former associate of Osama bin Laden in the early 1990s. Al-Fadl was recruited for the Afghan war through the Farouq mosque in Brooklyn. In 1988, he joined Al-Qaeda and took an oath of fealty to Bin Laden. After a dispute with Bin Laden, al-Fadl defected and became an informant to the United States government on al Qaeda activities.

Osama bin Laden

Osama bin Laden

Osama bin Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden, also transliterated as Usama bin Ladin, was a Saudi Arabian-born Islamist militant who was the mastermind behind the September 11 attacks and founder of the Pan-Islamic militant organization al-Qaeda. The group is designated as a terrorist group by the United Nations Security Council, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the European Union, and various countries. Under bin Laden, al-Qaeda was responsible for the September 11 attacks in the United States and many other mass-casualty attacks worldwide.

9/11 Commission

9/11 Commission

The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, also known as the 9/11 Commission, was set up on November 27, 2002, "to prepare a full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding the September 11 attacks", including preparedness for and the immediate response to the attacks. The commission was also mandated to provide recommendations designed to guard against future attacks.

George Tenet

George Tenet

George John Tenet is an American intelligence official and academic who served as the Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) for the United States Central Intelligence Agency, as well as a Distinguished Professor in the Practice of Diplomacy at Georgetown University.

Central Intelligence Agency

Central Intelligence Agency

The Central Intelligence Agency, known informally as the Agency and historically as the Company, is a civilian foreign intelligence service of the federal government of the United States, officially tasked with gathering, processing, and analyzing national security information from around the world, primarily through the use of human intelligence (HUMINT) and performing covert actions. As a principal member of the United States Intelligence Community (IC), the CIA reports to the Director of National Intelligence and is primarily focused on providing intelligence for the President and Cabinet of the United States. President Harry S. Truman had created the Central Intelligence Group under the direction of a Director of Central Intelligence by presidential directive on January 22, 1946, and this group was transformed into the Central Intelligence Agency by implementation of the National Security Act of 1947.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is a Pakistani Islamist militant held by the United States at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp under terrorism-related charges. He was named as "the principal architect of the 9/11 attacks" in the 9/11 Commission Report.

Khalifa Muhammad Turki al-Subaiy

Khalifa Muhammad Turki al-Subaiy

Khalifa Muhammad Turki al-Subaiy, born January 1, 1965, is a Qatari al-Qaeda facilitator and financier, and as such al-Subaiy has been sanctioned by numerous countries and organizations including the United Nations and U.S. government.

Al-Qaeda

Al-Qaeda

Al-Qaeda is a Sunni pan-Islamist militant organisation led by Salafi jihadists who self-identify as a vanguard spearheading a global Islamist revolution to unite the Muslim world under a supra-national Islamic state known as the Caliphate. Its members are mostly composed of Arabs, but also include other peoples. Al-Qaeda has mounted attacks on civilian and military targets in various countries, including the 1998 United States embassy bombings, the 2001 September 11 attacks, and the 2002 Bali bombings; it has been designated as a terrorist group by the United Nations Security Council, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the European Union, and various other countries around the world.

Qatar Central Bank

Qatar Central Bank

The Qatar Central Bank is the central bank of Qatar.

David S. Cohen (attorney)

David S. Cohen (attorney)

David Samuel Cohen is an American attorney who serves as the deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) since January 20, 2021. He also served as acting Director of the Central Intelligence Agency from January to March 2021. He previously occupied the role of deputy director from February 9, 2015 to January 20, 2017. Originally from Boston, Cohen previously worked at the U.S. Treasury Department and as an attorney in private practice. At the Treasury, among other posts, he served as the under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence where he gained the nickname of "sanctions guru".

Iraq

Iraq

Iraq, officially the Republic of Iraq, is a country in Western Asia. It is bordered by Turkey to the north, Iran to the east, the Persian Gulf and Kuwait to the southeast, Saudi Arabia to the south, Jordan to the southwest and Syria to the west. The capital and largest city is Baghdad. Iraq is home to diverse ethnic groups including Iraqi Arabs, Kurds, Turkmens, Assyrians, Armenians, Yazidis, Mandaeans, Persians and Shabakis with similarly diverse geography and wildlife. The vast majority of the country's 44 million residents are Muslims – the notable other faiths are Christianity, Yazidism, Mandaeism, Yarsanism and Zoroastrianism. The official languages of Iraq are Arabic and Kurdish; others also recognised in specific regions are Neo-Aramaic, Turkish and Armenian.

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, abbreviated as AQAP, also known as Ansar al-Sharia in Yemen, is a militant Sunni Islamist terrorist group primarily active in Yemen and Saudi Arabia that is part of the al-Qaeda network. It is considered the most active of al-Qaeda's branches that emerged after the weakening of central leadership. The U.S. government believes AQAP to be the most dangerous al-Qaeda branch. The group established an emirate during the 2011 Yemeni Revolution, which waned in power after foreign interventions in the subsequent Yemeni Civil War.

Opposing views

At the September 2014 congressional hearing, Steven Cook of the Council on Foreign Relations testified. Cook offered an alternative theory about Qatar's alleged lax enforcement against terrorism financing: self-interest. Cook argued that Qatar supports a wide variety of ideological groups in an effort to be independent from the influence of larger countries in the Middle East, such as Saudi Arabia.[6]

In a September 2014 interview with CNN, the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, said "We support all Palestinian people. We believe Hamas is a very important part of the Palestinian people." The Emir told CNN, "We don't fund extremists. If you talk about certain movements, especially in Syria and Iraq, we all consider them terrorist movement."[2]

After Cohen made his public remarks in October 2014, the Qatar ambassador to the United States, Mohammed al-Kuwari, acknowledged to the Wall Street Journal that Qatar has had problems with some of its citizens sending money to terrorist organizations. However, al-Kuwari said that the Qatari government was never involved.[64]

In 2004, the Qatari government created a Financial Intelligence Unit. In 2010, it created an anti-terrorism committee.[1]

Furthermore, Qatar passed a law that implements regulations against charities that have been accused of sending money to terrorist organizations.[64]

2017 diplomatic crisis

On May 27, 2017, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of destabilising the region and supporting terrorist groups. Saudi Arabia said it took the decision to cut diplomatic ties due to Qatar's "embrace of various terrorist and sectarian groups aimed at destabilising the region", including the Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaida, Islamic State and groups supported by Iran in the kingdom's restive eastern province of Qatif where the vast majority of the population are Shia Muslims.[90] According to CNN, Qatar had previously signed agreements with its neighbors, which were presented on the air, to stop funding several terrorist organizations.[91]

Support and affiliation for radical terrorist organizations (Libya)

The diplomatic crisis extends to Qatar's involvements in advocating the releases of Internationally recognized terrorists such as Libya's Abdelhakim Belhadj, Leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group – a terrorist organization, who was arrested by the CIA in 2004 in Malaysia, and involvement in the 2011 Libyan civil war, in which Qatar sent aid in the form of Weapons using Ali al-Sallabi ( Leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in Libya ) as a conduit for dispersal of the weapons for Islamists within Libya – specifically (Ansar Al Sharia) during the Libyan civil war which eventually helped with the downfall of Libya's Muammar Gaddafi. Supporting this claim, The Libyan National army spokesperson, Col.Ahmed Musmari[92] accused Qatar of sponsoring terrorism[93] by providing and arming Terrorists in Libya.

Alongside the List of people placed on the terrorist watchlist by the Arab nations and their Anti-Terror Quartet [ATQ],[94] Sadiq Al-Ghariani, the radical Salafi Imam of Libya and his TV channel Tannasoh,[95] are also included in the List for incitement of violence and spreading radical Islamic propaganda. The list was extended with Salem Al-Jaber, Wanis Al-Mabrouk Al-Fasi, Salim Al-Sheikhi as other individuals.

End of crisis

On 4 January 2021, Qatar and Saudi Arabia agreed to resolution of the crisis brokered by Kuwait and United States. Saudi Arabia will reopen its border with Qatar and begin the process for reconciliation. An agreement and final communique signed on 5 January 2021 following a GCC summit at Al-'Ula marks the resolution of the crisis, with precise details to be released later.

Discover more about 2017 diplomatic crisis related topics

Qatif

Qatif

Qatif or Al-Qatif is a governorate and urban area located in Eastern Province, Saudi Arabia. It extends from Ras Tanura and Jubail in the north to Dammam in the south, and from the Persian Gulf in the east to King Fahd International Airport in the west. This region has its own municipality and includes the Qatif downtown, Safwa, Saihat, Tarout Island, and many other smaller cities and towns.

CNN

CNN

CNN is a multinational cable news channel headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. Founded in 1980 by American media proprietor Ted Turner and Reese Schonfeld as a 24-hour cable news channel, and presently owned by the Manhattan-based media conglomerate Warner Bros. Discovery, CNN was the first television channel to provide 24-hour news coverage and the first all-news television channel in the United States.

Libyan Islamic Fighting Group

Libyan Islamic Fighting Group

The Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), also known as Al-Jama'a al-Islamiyyah al-Muqatilah bi-Libya, was an armed Islamist group. Militants participated in the 2011 Libyan Civil War as the Libyan Islamic Movement, and are involved in the Libyan Civil War as members of the Libya Shield Force. Alleged militants include alleged Al Qaeda organizer Abd al-Muhsin Al-Libi who now holds a key command position in the Libya Shield Force.

Ali al-Sallabi

Ali al-Sallabi

Dr. Ali Muhammad al-Sallabi, or al-Salabi is a Muslim historian, religious scholar and Islamist politician from Libya. He was arrested by the Gaddafi regime, then left Libya and studied Islam in Saudi Arabia and Sudan during the 1990s. He then studied in Qatar under Yusuf al-Qaradawi and returned to Libya during the 2011 overthrow of Gaddafi and distributed weapons, money, and aid to Islamist groups in the country. His actions were criticized by members of the internationally recognized Libyan government under the National Transitional Council who he in turn criticized as being secular.

Ansar al-Sharia (Libya)

Ansar al-Sharia (Libya)

Ansar al-Sharia in Libya was a Salafist Islamist militia and Al-Qaeda-aligned group that advocated the implementation of Sharia law across Libya. Ansar al-Sharia came into being in 2011, during the Libyan Civil War. Until January 2015, it was led by its "Amir", Muhammad al-Zahawi. As part of its strategy, the organization targeted specific Libyan and American civilians for death and took part in the 2012 Benghazi attack. The group was designated as a terrorist organization by the United Nations, Iraq, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Muammar Gaddafi

Muammar Gaddafi

Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi, also known as Colonel Gaddafi, was a Libyan politician, revolutionary, and political theorist. He was the de facto leader of Libya from 1969 to 2011, first as Revolutionary Chairman of the Libyan Arab Republic from 1969 to 1977 and then as the Brotherly Leader of the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya from 1977 to 2011. Initially ideologically committed to Arab nationalism and Arab socialism, he later ruled according to his own Third International Theory.

Sadiq Al-Ghariani

Sadiq Al-Ghariani

Al-Sadiq Abd al-Rahman Ali al-Ghariani has been the Grand Mufti of Libya since 2012. He is a Muslim imam of the Maliki school of thought. Academically he is a seated professor in the College of Sharia in the University of Tripoli since 1969 and distinguished contributor the Maliki school of thought with his numerous publications.

Qatar

Qatar

Qatar, officially the State of Qatar, is a country in Western Asia. It occupies the Qatar Peninsula on the northeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula in the Middle East; it shares its sole land border with Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its territory surrounded by the Persian Gulf. The Gulf of Bahrain, an inlet of the Persian Gulf, separates Qatar from nearby Bahrain. The capital is Doha, home to over 80% of the country's inhabitants, and the land area is mostly made up of flat, low-lying desert.

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia, officially the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), is a country in Western Asia. It covers the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and has a land area of about 2,150,000 km2 (830,000 sq mi), making it the fifth-largest country in Asia, the second-largest in the Arab world, and the largest in Western Asia and the Middle East. It is bordered by the Red Sea to the west; Jordan, Iraq, and Kuwait to the north; the Persian Gulf, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates to the east; Oman to the southeast; and Yemen to the south. Bahrain is an island country off the east coast. The Gulf of Aqaba in the northwest separates Saudi Arabia from Egypt. Saudi Arabia is the only country with a coastline along both the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf, and most of its terrain consists of arid desert, lowland, steppe, and mountains. Its capital and largest city is Riyadh. The country is home to Mecca and Medina, the two holiest cities in Islam.

Kuwait

Kuwait

Kuwait, officially the State of Kuwait, is a country in Western Asia. It is situated in the northern edge of Eastern Arabia at the tip of the Persian Gulf, bordering Iraq to the north and Saudi Arabia to the south. Kuwait also shares maritime borders with Iran. Kuwait has a coastal length of approximately 500 km (311 mi). Most of the country's population reside in the urban agglomeration of the capital city Kuwait City. As of 2022, Kuwait has a population of 4.45 million people of which 1.45 million are Kuwaiti citizens while the remaining 3.00 million are foreign nationals from over 100 countries.

United States

United States

The United States of America, commonly known as the United States or America, is a country primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 states, a federal district, five major unincorporated territories, nine Minor Outlying Islands, and 326 Indian reservations. The United States is also in free association with three Pacific Island sovereign states: the Federated States of Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau. It is the world's third-largest country by both land and total area. It shares land borders with Canada to its north and with Mexico to its south. It has maritime borders with the Bahamas, Cuba, Russia, and other nations. With a population of over 333 million, it is the most populous country in the Americas and the third most populous in the world. The national capital is Washington, D.C. and the most populous city and financial center is New York City.

Al-'Ula

Al-'Ula

Al-'Ula, sometimes stylized in English as AlUla, is an ancient Arabic oasis city located in Medina province of northwestern Saudi Arabia. Situated in the Hejaz, a region that features prominently in the history of Islam as well as several pre-Islamic Semitic civilizations, Al-'Ula was a market city on the historic incense route that linked India and the Gulf to the Levant and Europe.

United States' position

On June 6, 2017, the US State Department said Qatar had made progress on stemming the funding of terrorists but that there was more work to be done.[96] Prior to the crisis, President Donald Trump had made a trip to Saudi Arabia and met with Middle East leaders. Trump later said the leaders had all pointed to Qatar as the main funder of extremism.[97][98][99][100] On June 7, 2017, Trump offered to mediate in the "crisis" and made a call to Qatar offering help.[101]

In June 2017, the government of Qatar hired American attorney and politician John Ashcroft to represent the country in the wider international arena. His services include both lobbying and challenging international accusations following the regional blockade of Qatar by its neighbors. In addition, Ashcroft will be defending Qatar against U.S. president Donald Trump, who has commented on the country's evident proclivity towards funding terrorism and terrorist organizations.[102][103][104][105]

According to The Washington Post, the United Arab Emirates planted false evidence before the crisis.[106] According to CNN, the UAE officially denied those claims through its United States Embassy and its Foreign Affairs Minister Anwar Gargash.[91][107]

On August 17, Saudi Arabia opened the land borders that connect Qatar with Saudi Arabia.[108]

In July 2017, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, praised Qatar after it became the first regional state to sign a memorandum of understanding with the U.S. to fight terrorist financing. Tillerson also commended Qatar, as it behaved reasonably throughout the dispute.[109]

On October 19, 2019, Tillerson said in an interview that Saudi-led bloc is responsible for the continued crisis because their refusal to talk to Qatar so far. On October 30, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin praised "strong ties" with Qatar, and vowed closer cooperation with the country. After a trip to many Middle East countries, the minister applauded Qatar's efforts in fighting terrorist financing, saying that the two countries will increase their cooperation in fighting terrorism.[110]

In August 2020, the US State Department sent the Coordinator for Counterterrorism Nathan Sales to Doha to thank Qatar for their efforts against terrorism and to discuss Qatar’s role in combating the financing of terrorism, its new Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism legislation and its participation in the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS.[111]

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Donald Trump

Donald Trump

Donald John Trump is an American businessman, media personality, and politician who served as the 45th president of the United States from 2017 to 2021.

John Ashcroft

John Ashcroft

John David Ashcroft is an American lawyer, lobbyist and former politician who served as the 79th U.S. Attorney General in the George W. Bush administration from 2001 to 2005. A former U.S. Senator from Missouri and the 50th Governor of Missouri, he later founded the Ashcroft Group, a Washington D.C. lobbying firm.

The Washington Post

The Washington Post

The Washington Post is an American daily newspaper published in Washington, D.C. It is the most widely circulated newspaper within the Washington metropolitan area and has a large national audience. Daily broadsheet editions are printed for D.C., Maryland, and Virginia.

CNN

CNN

CNN is a multinational cable news channel headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. Founded in 1980 by American media proprietor Ted Turner and Reese Schonfeld as a 24-hour cable news channel, and presently owned by the Manhattan-based media conglomerate Warner Bros. Discovery, CNN was the first television channel to provide 24-hour news coverage and the first all-news television channel in the United States.

Rex Tillerson

Rex Tillerson

Rex Wayne Tillerson is an American engineer and energy executive who served as the 69th U.S. secretary of state from February 1, 2017, to March 31, 2018, under President Donald Trump. Prior to joining the Trump administration, Tillerson was chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) of ExxonMobil, holding that position from 2006 until 2017.

Steven Mnuchin

Steven Mnuchin

Steven Terner Mnuchin is an American investment banker and film producer who served as the 77th United States secretary of the treasury as part of the Cabinet of Donald Trump from 2017 to 2021. Serving for a full presidential term, Mnuchin was one of the few high-profile members of Trump's cabinet whom the president did not dismiss.

Coordinator for Counterterrorism

Coordinator for Counterterrorism

The Coordinator for Counterterrorism heads the Bureau of Counterterrorism and Countering Violent Extremism, which coordinates U.S. government efforts to fight terrorism. As the head of the counterterrorism bureau, the coordinator for counterterrorism has the rank of both ambassador-at-large and assistant secretary.

Nathan Sales

Nathan Sales

Nathan Alexander Sales is an American lawyer, academic, and government official who served as the coordinator for counterterrorism and special envoy to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS within the U.S. Department of State from 2017 to 2021. Prior to public service he was an associate professor at Syracuse University College of Law, where his fields of research included national security law, counterterrorism law, administrative law, and constitutional law. Sales was also of counsel at the law firm Kirkland & Ellis.

War against the Islamic State

War against the Islamic State

In response to rapid territorial gains made by the so-called Islamic State during the first half of 2014, and its universally condemned executions, reported human rights abuses and the fear of further spillovers of the Syrian Civil War, many states began to intervene against it in both the Syrian Civil War and the War in Iraq. Later, there were also minor interventions by some states against IS-affiliated groups in Nigeria and Libya.

Qatar's anti-terrorism legislation

The 2004 Law on Combating Terrorism contained far-reaching provisions defining and prosecuting terrorist activities in Qatar that are directed against the state. These included a prohibition on supplying information, training, weapons, financing, and material support for terrorists and terrorist organizations, as well as establishing, directing, or using legitimate entities, associations, or organizations to perpetrate terrorist activities. The law also criminalized cooperation with or membership in organizations or groups outside Qatar that commit a terrorist crime, including crimes not directed against the State of Qatar, and prohibits receiving military training from such organizations or groups located abroad.[5]

In March 2007, Qatar established the National Counter Terrorism Committee (NCTC)[112] at the Ministry of Interior.[113] The NCTC publishes the national terrorist designation list.[3][114]

The 2010 Combating Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Law requires Qatar's public prosecutor's office to freeze the funds of individuals and organizations that are on the UN Security Council's terror sanctions list.[115][116]

In 2017, the 2004 Law on Combating Terrorism was amended.[117] The amendment included definitions of activities related to terrorism and terrorism financing, penalties for offenses related to terrorism and terrorism financing, and the creation of national designations lists. In addition, measures to monitor and restrict overseas activities of Qatari charities were significantly tightened.[118][119] In 2019 the Qatari government introduced a new anti-money laundering and counter terror financing laws.[9] These laws included rules on targeted financial sanctions and became effective in February 2020.[31]

Discover more about Qatar's anti-terrorism legislation related topics

Public prosecutor's office

Public prosecutor's office

Public prosecutor's offices are criminal justice bodies attached to the judiciary.

Asset freezing

Asset freezing

Asset freezing is a form of interim or interlocutory injunction which prevents a defendant to an action from dealing with or dissipating its assets so as to frustrate a potential judgment. It is widely recognised in other common law jurisdictions and such orders can be made to have world-wide effect. It is variously construed as part of a court's inherent jurisdiction to restrain breaches of its process.

United Nations Security Council

United Nations Security Council

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations (UN) and is charged with ensuring international peace and security, recommending the admission of new UN members to the General Assembly, and approving any changes to the UN Charter. Its powers include establishing peacekeeping operations, enacting international sanctions, and authorizing military action. The UNSC is the only UN body with the authority to issue binding resolutions on member states.

Money laundering

Money laundering

Money laundering is the process of illegally concealing the origin of money, obtained from illicit activities such as drug trafficking, corruption, embezzlement or gambling, by converting it into a legitimate source. It is a crime in many jurisdictions with varying definitions. It is usually a key operation of organized crime.

Terrorism financing

Terrorism financing

Terrorism financing is the provision of funds or providing financial support to individual terrorists or non-state actors.

Source: "Qatar and state-sponsored terrorism", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qatar_and_state-sponsored_terrorism.

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Bibliography

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