By Arab News
Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt on Tuesday added 9 entities and 9 individuals to their list of terrorist groups, which they said have direct or indirect ties with Qatari authorities.
In a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), the four countries collectively known as the Anti-Terror Quartet (ATQ), said that the three Qatari individuals and the lone Kuwaiti in its additional list have engaged in fund-raising campaigns to support Al-Nusra Front and other terrorist militias in Syria.
The list also included three Yemeni individuals and three organizations in Yemen that have allegedly provided support to Al- Qaeda, and have conducted actions on the terror network’s behalf, mainly by using significant funding from Qatari charities designated by the four states as terrorist entities.
It said “the two Libyan individuals and the six entities affiliated with terrorist groups in Libya have received substantial financial support from the Qatari authorities and played an active role in spreading chaos and devastation in Libya, despite serious international concern over the destructive impact of such practices.”
The four allies broke diplomatic relations with Qatar in early June largely over their allegations that it supports terrorist and extremist groups — a charge Qatar rejects.
On June 8, 2017, the Anti-Terror Quartet released a long list of 59 individuals and 12 Qatari-affiliated entities described as “terrorist supporters.”
The quartet initially made 13 demands, and which Qatar dismissed. Last week, the group urged Qatar to commit to six principles on combatting extremism and terrorism and negotiate a plan with specific measures to implement them — a step that could pave the way for an early resolution of the crisis.
Qatar also dismissed the demand, insisting on its innocence and saying it would not accept dictates that would insult its sovereignty as a nation.
“While noting that the Qatari authorities had previously signed a memorandum of understanding with the United States to stop terror financing and then announced that it was amending its terror combating laws, the four states consider this step, even if it is a submission to the tough demands to combat terrorism and one of many awaited steps to achieve the Qatari authorities’ return to the right track, not enough,” said the report.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson recently concluded several days of shuttle diplomacy and sealed a deal to intensify Qatar’s counterterrorism efforts. The memorandum of understanding signed by the US and Qatar lays out steps Qatar can take to bolster its fight against terrorism and address shortfalls in policing terrorism funding.
Despite Qatar’s 2004 law against terrorism, the quarter said, “these individuals and groups have expanded their presence and activity in and through Doha.”
It said Qatar has a “long history in breaking all signed and binding agreements and legal obligations, the latest of which was the 2013 Riyadh Agreement and the 2014 Supplemental Agreement. Moreover, it continued harboring terrorists, financing attacks and promoting hate speech and extremism,” it said.
The quartet said it is awaiting urgent action by the Qatari authorities to make legal and practical actions to prosecute terrorist and extremist individuals and entities o as to confirm the credibility of its seriousness in renouncing terrorism and extremism, and its engagement in the international community fighting terrorism.”