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(Text of the Statement)

On August 17th, 2017, the media in Saudi Arabia reported that the Saudi authorities allow pilgrims of the State of Qatar to enter Saudi Arabia through Salwa border crossing without electronic permits, and to travel directly from Doha via airlines excluding Qatar Airways.

Qatar National Human Rights Committee expresses its satisfaction at the decision of the Saudi authorities – according to the media – as a step towards removing obstacles and difficulties faced by the pilgrims and facilitating Hajj procedures this year.

Since the beginning of the siege, Qatar National Human Rights Committee has called for facilitating Hajj procedures for citizens and residents of the State of Qatar without restrictions, and also called for regional and international moves to lift the injustice and not to politicize the Hajj or use it as a leverage against peoples or governments.

Qatar National Human Rights Committee stresses that the issue of Hajj cannot be subject to any political or personal mediations or scores, however it should only be considered as an inherent right stipulated in all international human rights agreements and conventions and Islamic Sharia.

Qatar National Human Rights Committee considers that the decision of the Saudi authorities is still unclear, especially with regard to pilgrims living in the State of Qatar, accordingly Qatar National Human Rights Committee calls for facilitating procedures for the pilgrims without discrimination, and looks forward to further measures to completely lift the siege on citizens and residents of the State of Qatar and GCC nationals.

25 Dhu Al-Qadah 1438
17 August 2017
Doha, Qatar
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