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Israel's UN envoy says Qatar is a 'Club Med for terrorists' destabilizing the Middle East

WJC, Israel's ambassador to the United Nations in New York, Ron Prosor, has lambasted the Persian Gulf emirate Qatar for bankrolling terrorist groups such as Hamas and called it a "Club Med for terrorists".

Qatar's then emir Hamad ben Khalifa Al Thani with Hamas leader Haniyeh in Gaza in 2012In an opinion piece for the 'New York Times', Prosor urged the world to work forcefully to halt Qatar’s ability to bankroll the terror groups, specifically Hamas. “Today, the petite petroleum kingdom is determined to buy its way to regional hegemony, and like other actors in the Middle East, it has used proxies to leverage influence and destabilize rivals,” the ambassador wrote. “Every one of Hamas’s tunnels and rockets might as well have had a sign that read ‘Made possible through a kind donation from the emir of Qatar,’” Prosor added.

He also accused the Qatar-based news network 'al-Jazeera', which is funded by the emirate’s ruling house, of spreading “radical messages that have inflamed sectarian divides” across the Middle East.

“In the early days of the Arab Spring, al-Jazeera’s coverage of popular uprisings earned the network millions of new followers and solidified its status as a mainstream global news network,” Prosor continued. “Qatar capitalized on this popularity by advancing its own agenda — namely, using the Arabic network to promote the views of extremists who were undermining the region’s more pragmatic elements,” he said, later singling out the Muslim Brotherhood as the main group enjoying Doha’s support.

Prosor said that Qatar was deliberately undermining Israel’s efforts to end Hamas’s ongoing rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip by “pulling the strings” of the Palestinian organization and forcing the group to reject cease-fire proposals.

It was “all because Doha wants a starring role in any cease-fire agreement between Hamas and Israel,” Prosor asserted.

According to Prosor, Qatar "harbors leading Islamist radicals like the spiritual leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, who issued a religious fatwa endorsing suicide attacks, and the Doha-based history professor Abdul Rahman Omeir al-Naimi, whom the United States Department of Treasury has named as a 'terrorist financier' for Al Qaeda. Qatar also funds a life of luxury for Khaled Meshal, the fugitive leader of Hamas. Mr. Meshal’s uncompromising stance — he has vowed never to recognize Israel — has long been an obstacle to reaching a peace deal. But behind Hamas, Qatar is pulling the strings...It is time for the world to wake up and smell the gas fumes."

The Israeli diplomat suggested that “in light of the emirate’s unabashed support for terrorism,” FIFA should reevaluate its decision to name Qatar the host of soccer’s 2022 World Cup.

The international community had to realize that while “Qatar has spared no cost to dress up its country as a liberal, progressive society,” it was in actuality “aggressively financing radical Islamist movements” and destabilizing the region, Prosor wrote.

“Qatar’s continued sponsorship of Hamas all but guarantees that, whatever happens in this round of hostilities, the terrorist group will rearm and renew hostilities with Israel,” he said. “The only way forward is to isolate Hamas’s last major backer.”
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UN envoy urges Israelis and Palestinians to accelerate, not undermine, peace negotiations

UN, Efforts for renewed peace prospects in the Middle East should not be neglected amid the turmoil elsewhere in the neighborhood, the top United Nations envoy in the region told the Security Council today, while also urging both Israelis and Palestinians to act responsibly and avoid actions that risk undermining the prospects for resumed negotiations.
“The negotiating teams have been engaged in several rounds of talks and we encourage both sides to accelerate and intensify their discussions,” UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry said in his briefing to the 15-member body.
He noted that the international community has long supported the vision of a two-State solution and now has a responsibility to give these efforts a chance. “But the onus to sustain an enabling environment lies with the parties. Both should refrain from actions that risk undermining the prospects on negotiations.
“And we urge them to act responsibly and with restraint,” Mr. Serry added. “Concurrently, any substantial political initiative must yield early dividends in the immediate period ahead with tangible improvements to security and socio-economic conditions for Israelis and Palestinians alike.”
In this regard, he welcomed a recent Israeli Government decision to increase the number of work permits for West Bank Palestinians by 5,000, and said he looked forward to further steps of economic cooperation and easing restrictions on access and movement of Palestinians.
At the same time, he noted that settlement activity continued in the West Bank and in East Jerusalem and reiterated that such actions are “counterproductive.” Clashes between Palestinians and settlers also continued and reports of settler attacks against Palestinian farmers are “particularly worrisome,” he said.
“We do not underestimate the challenges ahead and the momentous efforts required to sustain and successfully conclude negotiations within the prescribed timeframe,” said Mr. Serry, who noted that two decades have now passed since the signing of the Oslo Accords.
“And yet, 20 years of peace efforts have also demonstrated that fair, reasonable and legitimate solutions can be found for the key issues dividing the parties. It is for the negotiators to identify and narrow these gaps, and for their leaders to take decisions in the best interest of their peoples. And the international community, including key regional stakeholders, must now show unity and resolve in assisting the parties in moving forward.”
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Mr. Serry noted, looks forward to productive meetings later this month of the diplomatic Quartet, which comprises the European Union, Russia, UN and United States, and of the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee, which deals with development assistance to the Palestinian people, as well as to constructive debate during this year’s General Assembly.
“Words are critical in preparing the ground for peace,” stressed Mr. Serry. “Both leaders are soon to address the General Assembly and we sincerely hope they take the opportunity to reach out to each other’s people in making the case for peace.”

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