– After more than two years, the Gulf crisis is still in place, and the suffering of the victims is getting worse
– The audience was shocked by the critical repercussions of the crisis of the blockade of Qatar
– They questioned the harsh sanctions that have been imposed on citizens and residents of the Gulf states due to the political crisis
– Participants in the seminar noted the need to neutralize civilians in any political conflicts
– Intellectuals, diplomats, parliamentarians and journalists can play a crucial role in protecting human rights and educating world public opinion
The US administration, elites, organizations and parliamentarians, as well as American politicians can play more effective role in pressuring the blockading countries and urging them to stop their violations of human rights, said Chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri, noting that after more than two years , the Gulf crisis is still in place, and the suffering of the victims is getting worse because of the intransigence of the blockading countries and their disregard for the calls of governments and international organizations that condemned the violations caused by the blockade.
This came during a seminar held by Qatar-America Institute in Washington, DC, in the presence of a group of think tanks in the United States, including diplomats, intellectuals, researchers of intellectual institutions, writers and journalists, where they talked about developments of the human rights in the State of Qatar and the repercussions of the blockade imposed since June 5, 2017.
At the beginning of the session, Dr. Al Marri gave an overview of the establishment of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) , its functions, the most important challenges it faced in protecting and developing human rights in Qatar, and the new challenges posed by the blockade crisis.
Responding to a question about the committee’s handling of complaints filed by expatriate workers in Qatar, Dr. Al Marri said: “Since the establishment of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), we have been keen to receive all complaints submitted by expatriates from different nationalities and we are working with the concerned authorities in the country to resolve the concerns raised. We have made many recommendations to the Qatari government to amend some laws, and many legislations have been amended in favor of the protection of labor rights and human rights in general, notably abolition of the sponsorship law, noting the importance of the opening of the ILO office in Doha and the appreciation of the reforms undertaken by the Qatari Government for the protection and development of human rights.
On his assessment of the US role since the beginning of the Gulf crisis, Dr. Al Marri said: “We believe that the US administration can play a more effective and influential role in resolving the Gulf crisis and pressure its allies the blockading countries to stop violations of the rights of citizens and residents of the State of Qatar, and the right of Gulf families in general, as a matter of priority given by Washington to the issue of defending human rights in the world.”
Chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), Dr. Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri went said that “We bet on a greater role for think tanks in the United States. thinkers, diplomats, parliamentarians and journalists are the most important actors who can play a crucial role in protecting human rights and educating world public opinion.”
On the challenges facing the NHRC since the beginning of the Gulf crisis, Dr. Al-Marri said, “since the first day of the blockade, we have been received numerous complaints from citizens and residents of the State of Qatar, and even from citizens of the countries of the blockade and we have been keen to communicate with the various concerned bodies and human rights institutions of the blockading countries, to try to stop the violations that affected thousands of families, but to no avail. “
“Over the past two years, we have worked on different legal and human rights paths to try to compensate the victims, condemn the grave violations of the blockade, and encourage the affected people and the Qatari government to take all possible legal and judicial measures to redress victims”, Dr. Al-Marri said . Al Marri gave the audience copies of the reports of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) on the violations resulting from the blockade together with the report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the order of the International Court of Justice, which all unanimously condemned the discriminatory measures of the blockading countries against the citizens and residents of the State of Qatar. Al Marri also provided them with a brief on the international cases against the countries of the blockade, with the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, the International Court of Justice, World Trade union, the International Civil Aviation Organization and other legal tracks.
Dr. Al Marri presented a detailed report on the order of the International Court of Justice on the violations of the UAE, pointing out that it extended to property owners and investors who incurred losses since the beginning of the crisis and have not been able to recover their property or compensation for damage to their property, in parallel to the difficult access of those affected to the UAE courts to exercise their right to litigation, as stipulated in the International Court of Justice ruling pointing out that the UAE has become an unsafe environment for Qatari investors.
The participants were shocked of the serious dimensions of the crisis of the blockade of Qatar and questioned the harsh sanctions have been imposed on citizens and residents of the Gulf states due to the political crisis. They stressed the need to neutralize civilians in any political conflicts.