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The Pregnancy of Qatar




The Pregnancy of Qatar

Simon Weldemichael
Adi Keih College of Arts and Social Sciences
March 2018

The small but rich economic giant Arab country of Qatar has made needless interventions in the Horn of Africa. Right after the unexpected Gulf crisis, Qatar followed hasty and stroppy measures that threatened the stability of the Horn. Recent examples of the madness of Qatar government include the hasty withdrawal of Qatar peacekeeping forces stationed on the border between Eritrea and Djibouti. Secondly, Qatar gave Sudan three Mig jet aircrafts that were subsequently deployed in Kassala, a state bordering Eritrea. The nature of the charity was clearly manifested in the justification given by them to “thwart an attack from Eritrea.” In addition to that, Qatar through its mouthpiece Aljazeera is working tirelessly in manufacturing distorted information of defamation against Eritrea including the recently aired and quickly expired news “the deployment of Egyptian troops in Sawa”. For long Eritrea has been in the Aljazeera headlines – above all for a wave of false information sourced from enemies.

Now it becomes clear to everyone that Qatar is brewing something not to quench but to intoxicate someone. There is no doubt Qatar is pregnant with something but what is it? War or peace? Terrorism or humanitarianism? Polarization or arbitration? Proxy war or rapprochement?

Recently one top Eritrean official has said that Eritrea is “patiently waiting for a period of time for the Qatari brothers who have been trying in recent years to add Eritrea to the list of candidate countries for sabotage.” Helped by its ready supply of money, Qatar has become a country which has uncontested mastery in undermining the stability of any country. Gulf Cooperation Council members Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain - along with Egypt - severed their ties with Qatar, accusing it of fomenting regional unrest and supporting terrorism. The GCC were combating dangerous Qatar in its aggressive bid to stifle its destabilizing policies.

Qatar is working either to duplicate the Arab cleavage or to compensate her losses in the Arab world. Qatar’s destabilization mission in our region is aimed at installing insecurity and mistrust among member countries and sow the seeds of fanaticism and antagonism within the countries. Nowadays, it is common to hear a word of grievance from every country. For example, Chad has accused Qatar of supporting rebel movements that threaten its regime. Not only did Chad denounce Qatar for providing support to rebels, but it also accused Qatar of providing asylum for one of Chad’s most wanted rebel leaders. Now it seems clear that Qatar has decided to go against Eritrea by making false reports through its media and encouraging anti-Eritrea extremist groups to threaten Eritrea.

The erratic and flip-flopping stance of Sudan encouraged the intervention of Qatar in our region. The Sudan has often shifted its policies and interests in the immediate and broader region. History tells us that Sudan has long sought to destabilize Eritrea; for example, in Eritrea’s first years of independence, we saw Turabi’s aspirations to extend Islamist radicalization in the Horn. Eritrea achieved its internal solidarity and cohesion, and successfully challenged such efforts. In this case, it would be important to reiterate the fact to the lovers of truth that the extent of the situation was reached to a level of assassination attempt on President Issayas Afewerki. Many terrorist acts were carried out in the western region of Eritrea that caused considerable human and material losses. Eritrea left the matter to history to make its own judgment and it sought to open a new chapter of cooperation. Eritrea was even one of the leading countries dedicated to the peaceful resolution of the conflicts occurring in Sudan.

As a member of the international community, Eritrea has joined various regional and international organizations and played a great role in bringing about peace and harmony. The foreign policy of Eritrea is based on preserving national interests, working in the interests of regional and global peace and stability, and enhancing cooperation. Among the many objectives of the regional and international policies adopted in the National Charter of Eritrea include, “Starting with our neighbours, and our surrounding, to establish relations with all countries, regardless of their political and economicsystems, based on independence, respect of territorial integrity and national dignity, non-aggression, non-interference in internal affairs, equality and mutual interest.”

Eritrea’s regional policy has been drawn and anchored on the promotion of a safe and cooperative neighbourhood. This policy emanates from and is underpinned by compelling economic, political and security considerations. The National Charter of Eritrea has clearly stated that the “Economic and cultural development cannot be achieved in isolation from the surrounding and international countries. Establishing active and comprehensive cooperation with our neighbours and throughout the world is important for our economic and cultural development.”

This policy precept has been pursued and implemented in the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts in Sudan. Eritrea’s important role in bringing about an agreement between the central Government in Khartoum and the eastern opposition movements which resulted in the Asmara Peace Accord is a prominent example.

Currently, Sudan closed its border with Eritrea and sent thousands of troops to Kassala near the border. Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour stated that “There are some opposition forces on the eastern border; this is why we are anticipating whatever danger can come from there.” He further tried to justify for the deployment of Sudan's national army on the border claiming it was done “to protect Sudan's security as we have information that some parties are targeting us." The idea that Eritrea is or was about to launch an attack on Sudan is absolutely absurd. Throughout the existence of these two countries, Sudan never faced any threat from Eritrea. Instead, Eritrea has worked hard to extinguish the dangers of Sudan that mainly emanate from its internal problems.

One of the unfortunate (yet hardly surprising) parts of the affair is the political gymnastics of the deteriorated Ethiopia. Unable to rescue itself, the Ethiopian government sent soldiers to the “Joint Sudanese-Ethiopian Defence Unit” to conduct operations of security in Kassala.

Sudanese relations with Eritrea have never been stable due to the vacillation and ever-changing political position of Sudan’s government. After the outbreak of the Ethio-Eritrean war, Khartoum warmed more to the aggressor Weyane government and established a loose coalition with Ethiopia and Yemen to isolate Eritrea. In addition, many terrorists sheltered in Sudan began to penetrate and inflict damage in western region of Eritrea. The disastrous bombing in Barentu during the Independence Day celebrations in 2004 are a sad, horrific example. And now after years of rapprochement, the government of Sudan is engaged in manufacturing a non-existent threat that threatens to potentially thwart the harmonious relations between Eritrean and Sudanese people.

Now it seems like Eritrea’s positive engagement to create a safe and cooperative neighbourhood is regarded by some interest groups as a threat. Those are groups who want to continue their supremacy on behalf of uncertainty and those who want to carry on their lucrative business of administering crisis. The nonsensical Qatari intricacies in our region can be viewed as part of the desperate attempt to evaporate a cool climate of safety and cooperation prevailing between the people of Eritrea and Sudan. For the opportunist forces, the “threat of safety and security” is as bad as the existential threat of invasion and attack. As to the question “why does Qatar involve itself in such senseless intricacies?” posed by the government of Eritrea, there are many possible answers, most revolving around destabilizing Eritrea. Currently, the Horn of Africa is stormed by the public protest in Ethiopia and Sudan, civil unrest in South Sudan, crisis in Somalia and in all of its adjacent areas. Surprisingly, against all odds, Eritrea is able to maintain its peace. Overall, the people of our region must observe consciously and wait patiently for the Qatar’s delivery.

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The Pregnancy of Qatar Reviewed by Admin on 12:01 AM Rating: 5

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