Israel must rethink policies after losing friends: Qatar Emir

May 20, 2012
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Israel’s failure to make a long-awaited step towards achieving peace based on the end of settlements, the 1967 borders, and the two-state solution, will leave it more isolated after losing support, Qatar’s Emir has said.

“Israel cannot rely anymore on its friendship with rulers who were overthrown by the Arab spring revolutions,” Shaikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani said. “Israel should not be betting on other rulers to be against their own people and the overall opinion, because in this case Israel will find itself with no friends at all,” the emir said on Sunday morning as he opened the 12th Doha Forum.

Israeli must adhere to the international law, recognize the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, withdraw from the Syrian Golan and Lebanese Shebaa Farms and refrain from practices that prevent the achievement of a just peace in the future, such as building settlements and the Judaization of Jerusalem, the Emir said.

“Otherwise, it will miss the chance for peace because the rising generation of the Arab peoples will not accept injustice or occupation,” he said.

Shaikh Hamad said that the recent political developments in Israel allowed the prime minister to form the largest and most powerful government coalition in its history.

“The Israeli Prime Minister has now invalidated the Israeli argument that the fragility of the coalition government does not allow flexibility or make any compromises,” Shaikh Hamad said.

Referring to the uprising in several Arab countries, the Qatari ruler said that they sought to restore the people’s political, but also economic and social rights.

“Deprivation was one of the main reasons that sparked the Arab revolutions. It will soon be clear that transition to democracy cannot be separated from development policies that bridge the gap between the rich and the poor and create favourable economic conditions to expand the middle class,” he said.

Challenges to the transition to democracy include complex economic problems that require a long time to address or that may be hard to solve, such as low economic growth, high rates of unemployment and low productivity.

People should be properly engaged with complete transparency to appreciate the difficulties and the priorities.

Shaikh Hamad said that political freedom, the foundation of democracy, did not necessarily result in economic justice if it is not accompanied by social and humanitarian development and fair social policies.

Unemployment, one of the most important factors that can undermine social stability, and re-evaluation of the education systems must be given the utmost importance, he said.

Another challenge is to ensure that the ultimate objective for the nation is the sustainable development that includes achieving the economic, social, human and environmental goals, Shaikh Hamad said.

http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/qatar/israel-must-rethink-policies-after-losing-friends-qatar-emir-1.1025374

         

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About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Career
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
Education
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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