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Cablegate: Qatar Refutes Al-Qaida Payoff Allegation

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS DOHA 001096

SIPDIS

FOR NEA/ARPI THORNE
LONDON FOR PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PTER PGOV PREL UK QA
SUBJECT: QATAR REFUTES AL-QAIDA PAYOFF ALLEGATION


1. Post received the note verbale in paragraph two from the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs by fax on June 8. The message refutes
the allegation made in a Sunday Times article May 1 that Qatar
pays al-Qaida to spare it from attack. The note requests that the
Qatari position be transmitted to the "highest concerned
authorities" in the USG.

2. Unofficial translation of Note Verbale:

May 2005

On 5/1/2005 the Sunday Times has published an article by the
Israeli writer Uzi Mahanimi under the title "Qatar pays off Al-
Qaida attacks with oil money," in which he purports that the
government of Qatar pays millions of pounds, every year, to Al-
Qaida to avert other terrorist attacks.

1. The purport of this article is serious and undermines
Qatar's reputation. This story is baseless and we challenge the
writer to provide material evidence for his allegations, if he
ever had such evidence.
2. The writer pretends that he depends on "official sources"
and a "top-level official source." It is regrettable that the
Sunday Times did not probe this allegation with the official
Qatari authorities although it is a newspaper of high
professional reputation.
3. Qatar's record in the field of counter-terrorism and its
condemnation of terrorism is known to your friendly government.
It is also known that Qatar has been a victim of serious
terrorist attacks. You also know Qatar's full and clear
international commitment towards combating terrorism. If this is
not the case, your government, the international institutions and
the main powers combating terrorism would not have kept silent.
4. It seems unbelievable that the writer of the article tries
to back his prejudiced allegations by reference to Qatar's light
security measures in comparison to other Gulf States. In fact,
this is the reality of Qatar and that should be to the credit of
Qatar and not the contrary. Is it not ridiculous to criticize
such a situation? This fact alone is evidence that the allegation
stated in the article is just used to insult Qatar and nothing
else.
5. It seems that the writer of the article does not believe
that the world had changed, otherwise he would not have referred
to what has been done by some states in the 1970s and 1980s in a
barren effort to cast credibility on his story. The State of
Qatar cannot be measured against the countries he mentioned
because its peaceful policy and commitment to international law
is obvious and known.
6. The government of Qatar does not clearly know the motives
behind the writing and publication of this article. But, we
categorically believe that the motives are political and are
targeted to offend Qatar by virtue of its open polices that do
not serve the inclinations of some states in the region and
elsewhere.
7. The government of my country requests the conveyance of our
stand to the highest concerned authorities in your friendly
government, which my government hopes that it will understand it
in the light of its precise knowledge of our polices and
practices.

[end of text.]
UNTERMEYER

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