By: Agence France-Presse
Journalists and human rights activists on Tuesday denounced “threats” by Saudi Arabia and its allies towards Qatari media organisations, together with satellite tv for pc information broadcaster Al-Jazeera.
Regional kingpin Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt broke ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of fostering extremism and later issuing 13 calls for, together with Al-Jazeera’s closure.
At the tip Tuesday of a two-day convention on “freedom of expression”, organised by Qatar and attended by representatives of worldwide organisations, rights teams and teachers, a press release condemned “threats” by Saudi Arabia and its allies.
“The conference condemns unequivocally the threats by the governments of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the Arab Republic of Egypt and the kingdom of Bahrain demanding the closing down of Al-Jazeera and other media outlets,” it mentioned.
Human Rights Watch government director Kenneth Roth had opened the convention Monday saying: “Political freedom and especially free expressions are very much at the heart of the crisis facing Qatar today.”
He referred to as the convention “an necessary signal of dedication on Qatar’s half to have interaction in among the reforms that can allow them to keep their ethical excessive floor.
“This country is no more a democracy than the other Gulf countries,” Roth mentioned, calling on Doha “to become a genuine regional leader in human rights”.
Seamus Dooley, the performing secretary common of the National Union of Journalists for the UK and Ireland, mentioned journalists “are not pawns in a political game”.
He mentioned he and others had had to “think twice” earlier than accepting Qatar’s invitation to the convention over Doha’s “fundamental issues” with the rights of ladies, minorities and freedom of expression.
The head of Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee, Ali Bin Samikh al-Amarri, thanked delegates for “defending” Al-Jazeera, saying it was tantamount to “defending freedom of expression and the right to information”.
Closing Al-Jazeera is certainly one of 13 wide-ranging calls for by Riyadh and its allies earlier than a boycott of Doha and a “blockade” on the energy-rich Gulf emirate can finish.
On Tuesday, they upped the stress on Qatar, unveiling a “terrorist” blacklist of 18 organisations and people suspected of hyperlinks with Islamist extremists that they are saying had ties with Doha.(AFP)