Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 24 September 2020

Qatar paid for Houthi drones used in attacks on Saudi Arabia

New revelations unveil nation's involvement in destabilising regional rivals

The Houthi rebels have been recuiting teenage girls, including survivors of sexual violence, to work with the organisation in violation of their rights, a new UN report has claimed. EPA
The Houthi rebels have been recuiting teenage girls, including survivors of sexual violence, to work with the organisation in violation of their rights, a new UN report has claimed. EPA

Qatar has paid for Houthi attacks on Saudi Arabia by providing half a billion dollars for its drones programme as well as financing Hezbollah and the Muslim Brotherhood.

A report by an intelligence analyst known as Jason G has laid out how Qatar financed attacks on regional rivals, including Saudi Arabia. He said he was determined to raise the alarm over the potential threat such as a failed drone strike on Abha airport on Sunday. "I was actively working the last few weeks to determine the risk/threats of drone strikes, and the best payoff is when casualties are avoided," he told The National.

"You have to take every threat seriously and hope they don’t materialise. When one is thwarted, it’s the best outcome."

In recent years, Iran has provided the Houthis with sophisticated drones and a ballistic missile programme to carry out attacks on the kingdom.

Their indiscriminate fire has hit civilian homes, commercial airports, vital infrastructure and military targets.

Qatar has previously denied supporting the Houthi rebels in Yemen but Austria’s Die Press magazine has reported it had seen an extensive dossier documenting its involvement.

Jason G, who Die Press described as a former member of a secret service who now works as a private security analyst, said Qatar used an informant in the Saudi Arabian government to provide intelligence to the Houthi leadership, which was required in return to show it was targeting the country. The report also warned that Bahrain may come under similar attack because of its pivotal position on “international shipping routes”.

The paper said the report uncovered further funding of Hezbollah in Lebanon and various Muslim Brotherhood groups around the region by Doha.

Jason G is behind a number of reports on Qatari activity and last month said a senior royal approved delivery of military equipment to Hezbollah, endangering about 10,000 US troops hosted by Doha.

The August report, which Fox News said was verified by German intelligence, included information on how Qatar’s ambassador to Belgium and Nato, Abdulrahman bin Mohammed Al Khulaifi, tried to cover up the royal family’s role in financing Hezbollah with a bribe of €750,000 (Dh3.2 million) offered to Jason G.

Updated: September 5, 2020 10:08 AM

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