William's Feed
Aug 25, 2013

U.N. experts in Syria to visit site of poison gas attack

BEIRUT (Reuters) – U.N. weapons experts are due on Monday to inspect a site where poison gas killed many hundreds of people in Damascus suburbs, amid calls from Western capitals for military action to punish the world’s worst apparent chemical weapons attack in 25 years.

Syria agreed on Sunday to allow the inspectors to visit the site. The United States and its allies say evidence has been destroyed by government shelling of the area over the past five days, and the Syrian offer to allow inspectors came too late.

Jul 3, 2013

Smooth Qatar handover rooted in turbulent past of “Father Emir”

DUBAI (Reuters) – Qatar’s outgoing emir wanted to abdicate while he was still able to help his 33-year-old heir consolidate his authority, so ensuring minimal discord inside a family with a long record of palace intrigue.

While no one other than outgoing emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani can know his full motivations, foremost among them appears to have been a need for stability in a dynasty that has ruled for more than 130 years.

Jul 2, 2013

Insight: Smooth Qatar handover rooted in turbulent past of ‘Father Emir’

DUBAI (Reuters) – Qatar’s outgoing emir wanted to abdicate while he was still able to help his 33-year-old heir consolidate his authority, so ensuring minimal discord inside a family with a long record of palace intrigue.

While no one other than outgoing emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani can know his full motivations, foremost among them appears to have been a need for stability in a dynasty that has ruled for more than 130 years.

Jun 25, 2013

Young Qatar emir likely to remain Gulf Arab exception

DUBAI (Reuters) – Ageing Gulf Arab rulers swiftly congratulated Qatar’s young new emir on his accession on Tuesday, but will be in no rush to emulate his father’s abdication – for them, hereditary rule is for life.

The ascent to power of Crown Prince Sheikh Tamim, 33, provides a stark contrast to other Gulf Arab states whose youthful populations are ruled by kings or princes in their 60s, 70s and 80s, some with heirs of the same vintage.

Jun 24, 2013

Qatar readies new leadership, little policy change expected

DUBAI (Reuters) – Qatar appeared on Monday to be readying its population of nearly 2 million for new leadership that could see the emir and prime minister step down, a move analysts say would not herald big changes in energy, investment or foreign policies.

The tiny country, the world’s largest exporter of liquefied natural gas, is a global investment powerhouse, a growing force in international media and sport, and a financial backer of Arab Spring revolts in alliance with the Muslim Brotherhood.

Jun 19, 2013

Taliban host Qatar pushes to forefront of Afghan peace broking

DUBAI (Reuters) – Qatar’s hosting of a Taliban office for peace talks with the United States is the latest in a series of foreign policy gambits stretching over a decade – some peace-broking efforts, but others, notably in Libya and Syria, involving armed support.

U.S. officials are expected to meet delegates from the Afghan Islamist insurgency in the Qatari capital Doha on Thursday to try to advance peace efforts in Afghanistan, where the United States has battled the insurgents for 12 years.

Apr 29, 2013

In changing region, U.S. committed to military ties with Gulf Arabs

DUBAI/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Washington is signaling its military commitment to its Gulf Arab allies at a time of unfamiliar strain in their decades old partnership.

Syria’s civil war and Iran’s nuclear program have led to tensions, with Gulf Arab states willing a more assertive U.S. response to bring Iran to heel and force Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power. Growing U.S. energy independence has further complicated a relationship founded on oil and defense.

Apr 3, 2013
via FaithWorld

Dubai police chief says Muslim Brotherhood sows subversion in the Gulf

Photo

(Dubai’s police chief Dhahi Khalfan poses at his office during an interview with Reuters in Dubai April 2, 2013. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah)

Sunni Muslim-ruled Gulf Arab states are often wary of subversion from their powerful Shi’ite neighbour Iran, but Dubai’s veteran police chief reserves most of his wrath for the “dictators” of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Apr 3, 2013

Muslim Brotherhood sows subversion in Gulf: Dubai police chief

DUBAI (Reuters) – Sunni Muslim-ruled Gulf Arab states are often wary of subversion from their powerful Shi’ite neighbor Iran, but Dubai’s veteran police chief reserves most of his wrath for the “dictators” of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Dhahi Khalfan’s suspicions focus mostly on the Egyptian branch of the Sunni Islamist organization, propelled to power in the most populous Arab country in elections since the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak in a popular uprising in 2011.

Mar 27, 2013

Syrian opposition chief stakes out independent line

DOHA (Reuters) – Could the head of Syria’s fractious opposition achieve the seemingly impossible – build a unified movement capable of toppling President Bashar al-Assad, without becoming beholden to foreign powers or a particular sect or ideology?

An assertive performance at an Arab summit in Qatar this week showed that independent-minded Moaz Alkhatib is prepared to take risks in pursuit of this goal, banking on populist rhetoric and his personal popularity inside Syria.