– Dr. Al-Marri assured that the persistence of the UAE in its violations would lead to a threat to peace and security in the region
– How the countries of the blockade claim their support for peace and continue to tear apart the social fabric of the Gulf
– Al-Marri calls on His Holiness Pope to intervene to stop the violations based on his concern for human rights in the world
– The peoples of the Gulf have not witnessed an inflammatory speech similar to that of the countries of the blockade
– Separation of Thousands of families is the worst and most critical consequences of the violations of the blockade
– 20 months of serious and flagrant violations that have torn the Gulf social fabric
– We call on with His Holiness Pope Francis to pressure the UAE and the blockading countries to neutralize civilians and not to involve them in political disputes
– The peoples of the Gulf are the victims of punitive decisions of the countries of blockade that have used the peoples as hostage to resolve political disputes
Doha: 31 January 2019
Dr. Ali Bin Smaikh Al Marri, Chairman of the National Human Rights Committee, met on Thursday with His Holiness Pope Francis and spoke about the suffering of thousands of separated families and victims of the blockade who raised their complaints to the NHRC asking for ending the grave violations and suffering of thousands of separated families and students who were expelled from their schools as a result of the continuing unjust blockade imposed by the State of Qatar for almost 20 months. On the occasion of his upcoming visit to Abu Dhabi, His Holiness Pope called on the UAE and the rest of the countries of the blockade to neutralize civilians and not to involve them in the political crisis and to let them suffer the grave humanitarian consequences.
Al Marri spoke about the complaints and suffering of thousands of separated families and victims of the blockade
the chairman of the National Human Rights Committee met with His Holiness Pope Francis in the presence of Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, the secretary for relations with States of the Holy Vatican.
At the outset of his meeting with His Holiness Pope Francis, Dr. Ali Bin Smaikh Al-Marri gave a brief on the repercussions of the blockade imposed on Qatar since June 5, 2017, warning of the aggravation of human rights violations due to the intransigence of the blockading countries and their refusal to respond to appeals, in a way that can be described as a “dialogue of the deaf” in dealing with the calls of international organizations, reports of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the decision of the International Court of Justice, which calls for engaging in dialogue to resolve the crisis and put an end to human suffering worsening.
Al Marri praised the efforts made by His Holiness Pope Francis to protect human rights in the world, stressing the readiness of the National Human Rights Committee to strengthen partnership and cooperation with the Vatican to support its efforts to protect human rights in the region and the world.
“I come to extend a message to your Holiness, brought to me by thousands of separated families, children and women who have been stranded and deprived of their reunion for almost 20 months because of punitive measures that are not related to morality and human values, by The KSA and the UAE and the Kingdom of Bahrain, leading to violation of the rights of thousands of families that have been torn apart, while forcing parents to move away from their children, under the pretext of political dispute. We call upon you and support your best efforts to bring peace and security in the world. At the same time, we wonder, how peace can be brought in the Gulf region, while Discriminatory and racist measures persisted, such as those practiced by the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, with the support of Egypt against the peoples of the Gulf today”, Al Marri said
The call for peace should be preceded by the call for the lifting of the blockade
Al-Marri criticized the twofold position taken by the governments of the countries of the blockade that claim their support for world peace, while continuing to impose the blockade on the people and violate their rights. He said: “How do the countries of the blockade claim their support for peace, and they continue to tear apart the social fabric of the Gulf? Qatar, and even their people have not been excluded from their racist and discriminatory decisions and their deterrent laws that prevent them from communicating and reuniting with their parents and relatives in the State of Qatar. ”
Al Marri added: “The call for peace should be preceded by the call to lift the blockade on the State of Qatar and lift the injustice of the victims. In fact, there is a lack of political will on the part of the United Arab Emirates to bring peace to the region, or how else the government of Abu Dhabi punish the people through taking measures against citizens and residents of the State of Qatar and the UAE, through which families were separated, students were expelled, the right to property, work, movement and residence are violated, not to mention the involvement of UAE officials in encouraging conflict, inciting to hatred in the media and various platforms. Furthermore, We condemn the laws issued by the KSA that criminalize the sympathy of their people with their Qatar while imposing imprisonment and huge fines.”
On the other hand, His Excellency Dr. Ali Ben Smaikh praised the speech of His Holiness Pope Francis on the occasion of the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the presence of members of the diplomatic corps accredited to the Holy See, in which His Holiness stated that the objective of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is to remove barriers to family reunification and support integrated human development.”
“We join our voice to your holiness, and we affirm that the most serious repercussions caused by the blockade of Qatar are those violations that have caused the dispersal of thousands of families due to the measures taken by the blockading states”, Al Marri said.
Partnership in interfaith dialogue and human rights
At the end of his meeting with His Holiness Pope Francis, Dr. Ali bin Samikh gave a book of manuscripts on human rights in Islamic culture to his holiness. He also discussed with him the partnership between the NHRC and the Vatican in the field of interfaith dialogue and human rights. Al Marri briefed him on the activities of the NHRC in this field and its experience in organizing international exhibitions on human rights in Islam. In addition, they discussed the possibility of organizing the Arabic calligraphy exhibition “Human Rights in Islam” at the Vatican in the future, following the success of the exhibition in its previous versions, which was hosted by many countries of the world.
Al-Marri: The people of the Gulf have not witnessed an inflammatory speech similar to that of the countries of the blockade
The visit of the National Human Rights Committee to the Vatican, was also an opportunity to hold a meeting with Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, the secretary for relations with States of the Holy Vatican. During the meeting, Dr. Ali Bin Smaikh gave a presentation on the National Human Rights Committee and its role in the protection and promotion of human rights, and presented the most prominent developments in the State of Qatar in the field of human rights through the legislative reforms adopted by the Qatari Government for the development of human rights in response to the recommendations of the National Human Rights Committee.”
Al-Marri called on the Vatican to “mobilize its efforts and movements with international organizations and governments to address extremism, hate speech and incitement, and to avoid repeating the humanitarian tragedy of the peoples of the Gulf who have been the victims of punitive measures.”
Al Marri provided to the Holy See Secretary of State Archbishop Paul Richard all reports documenting the violations of the blockading states, including the “General Report on the blockade of Qatar” issued by the National Human Rights Committee, the report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on the blockade of Qatar, And the report issued by the National Human Rights Committee on the UAE violations of the ICJ’s decision.