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Qatar tells WEF in Davos that Red Sea crisis will not be defused without first resolving Gaza crisis

January 16, 2024 at 9:19 pm

Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al-Thani, Qatar’s prime minister, during a conversation panel on the opening day of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2024 [Stefan Wermuth/Bloomberg via Getty Images]

Qatar has warned that tensions and crisis in the Red Sea will not be resolved without first resolving Israel’s ongoing war on the Gaza Strip, stressing that the international community must recognise the “real issue” and root cause.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) annual gathering in the Swiss town of Davos this week, where political figures and business executives from around the world meet to discuss current and future issues, Qatar’s Prime Minister, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, stated that the situation in the Middle East “is a recipe for escalation everywhere” and warned against “just focusing on the symptoms and not treating the real issue”.

Following the start of Israel’s offensive against Gaza and the Palestinian Resistance group, Hamas, Yemen’s Houthi rebels have been attacking and seizing ships passing through the Bab Al-Mandab, to the Red Sea, causing concern over the state of global trade and igniting fears of the potential spread of Israel’s war.

READ: Israel’s war on Gaza: The Red Sea crisis

The Qatari Prime Minister emphasised, however, that the root cause of that crisis was the Israeli bombardment and invasion of Gaza itself, saying that the Strip “is not there anymore” and that Israel there has been “carpet bombing everywhere” conducted by Occupation forces.

“We need to address the real issue, which is Gaza, in order to get everything else defused,” Sheikh Mohammed stressed. “We shouldn’t just focus on those small conflicts, we should focus on the main conflict in Gaza, and as soon as it’s defused, I believe everything else will be defused.”

He also addressed the potential future of Gaza and its governance, saying that it would be the Palestinian people’s choice whether Hamas would be part of any deal or settlement following the war. The Qatari Prime Minister reiterated the need for Israel to make binding commitments to a two-state solution, however, saying that “the better idea is to bring the two-state solution back to the table” and that if Hamas’s ideology is not approved of, then “you have to replace it with a better idea”.