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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 October 2018

Qatari tribe holds sit-in at UN HQ to protest Doha 'crimes'

The Al Ghufran tribe called on the international community to help their cause

A delegation from Al Ghufran Tribe, one of the biggest tribes in Qatar, staged a protest on Tuesday in front of the United Nations in Geneva. WAM
A delegation from Al Ghufran Tribe, one of the biggest tribes in Qatar, staged a protest on Tuesday in front of the United Nations in Geneva. WAM

One of Qatar's biggest tribes held a sit-in protest outside the United Nations headquarters in Geneva on Tuesday to denounce the crimes of Doha, where officials have revoked their citizenship and security forces have tortured members of the tribe.

The group staged the sit-in protest in front of the Broken Chair sculpture opposite the United Nations Palace in Geneva.

The tribe called on the international community to take a decisive stand on the Tamim regime, whom, they claim, have violated a number of international conventions and treaties through its racist policies against the Al-Ghufran tribe, Emirati news agency Wam reported.

The group urged the UN to investigate Qatar for its actions against the tribe.

“Our issue with the Qatar regime is purely humanitarian and not political, this is why we came here to present our case and our demands to the United Nations Human Rights Council. Our demands are clear: The Qatar regime should be held accountable for the crimes that it has committed against us and other Qataris, and the restoration of our rights,” Hamad Khaled Al-Marri, a member of the tribe, who took part in the stand, stated.

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Members also spoke of their dismay at the regime giving Qatari nationalities to extremists, especially Islamic extremists, who have participated in violence in Egypt, Syria, Libya and Iraq, while they have had their citizenship revoked.

On Monday, a delegation representing the Al Ghufran tribe handed a letter to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, that claimed systemic discrimination at the hands of the authorities in Doha.

The tribe's representatives asked the UN office for the second time this month to stop Qatari authorities’ continuous, systematic discrimination against them, and to protect the tribe’s members, restore their lost rights and to punish the Qatari regime for human rights violations.

In reaction to the Al Ghufran tribe’s opposition to the Qatari regime’s destabilising policies in the region and its dispute with the neighbouring Gulf states, Qatari authorities revoked the citizenship of Sheikh Taleb Bin Lahom Bin Shreim in August. It did the same for 54 members of his family who belong to the Al Murrah tribe in a step considered to be an arbitrary act by various Human Rights organisations.