As Qatar races to build new hotels, stadiums and rail lines ahead of the 2022 World Cup, the country’s security force has also been reaching out to foreign law enforcement agencies to help improve its ability to manage large crowds and maintain order.
Roughly a million foreign tourists are expected to visit Qatar during the football tournament, which is considered to be the world’s second largest sporting event after the Olympics.
In recent months, Qatar’s government has signed agreements and/or worked with various police forces in Canada, France and the UK.
According to the Qatar embassy in Ottawa, instructors with the Canadian Police College will provide specialized training to students enrolled in the Gulf country’s new police college, under a memorandum of understanding signed last month.
The local police college officially opened last August, with 130 students – mostly Qatari – enrolled in the four-year program.
While incidents of crime in Qatar have been increasing as the population grows, officials have stated that one of the primary goals of the college is to produce highly trained officers who can organize and maintain security for major events, such as the World Cup.
Football fans here would likely welcome a better-trained police force. In recent years, many have complained that the inability of security officials to competently manage large crowds puts a damper on large sporting events.
That includes the Men’s Handball World Championship earlier this year, as well as last year’s Emir Cup:
@dohanews terrible, messy queue, chaos outside the stadium and people jumping the fences! Stadium security were completely unprofessional.
— Salman Al-Mühannadi (@SalMuhanadi) January 3, 2014
In addition to Canada, Qatar has had plans in place as far back as 2013 to send students to the UK for part of their training.
However, the practice recently caused a stir in that country after the Telegraph reported that Qatar paid the Greater Manchester Police £400,000 (QR2.3 million) to train 300 of its officers in the English city.
“(The Qatar government) a reprehensible regime. (The Manchester police force) needs to look very carefully at who it is training,” British MP Graham Stringer was quoted as saying.
Qatar also gave their English hosts several gifts, at least one of which – a Hugo Boss watch – had to be auctioned off for charity to comply with the force’s ethics policies, a spokesperson told the Telegraph.
Defending the program, Manchester Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Jim Battle said:
“This program spreads the message of what good policing is (and) shares good practice with others.”
Qatar also has a deep security relationship with France.
The country’s Gendarmerie Nationale – the public safety branch of France’s armed forces – honored Lekhwiya commander Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani with a medal in 2012 for his role in joint exercises between the two forces.
France said it signed an agreement a decade ago for a “substantial training programme” for Qatar’s Internal Security Force and supported the country’s protective efforts for the 2006 Asian Games in Qatar.
The Gulf state has also tapped the Gendarmerie for assistance as it prepares security plans for the Doha Metro and World Cup.
This is an absolute necessity. The UK and Germany know how to handle major tournaments with effective policing but it is not only training. They need to rent thousands of their police officers for a period of three months to prepare for the tournament and then coordinate the policing. In fact they need specialists employed by Qatar now, to start advising and preparing the country.
The UKs recent global event being the Olympics in which security was a near disaster, would probably be a great place to start learning about the pitfalls of private sector security and political issues of filling the gap. Maybe they will tap into the locals who have done their military training
Really? Can you give examples?
I remember there was a huge scandal right before the games.. can’t recall the details but for some reason group 4 or the number 400 rings a bell.. It had to do with a private security provider not officials state security
I think it was the projection that not enough to security people were going to be available and trained in time. There was talk that they had to pay back some of their fee as the UK was going to draft in the military and extra police to make up the numbers in the end. Not so dramatic in the end and nothing to do with the quality of security.
G4 said they could provide 5 times the number of security, around 10,000; ultimately they couldnt, told organisers after being put under pressure, that they couldn’t right before the games, so the military and police filled the gap, G4 paid a fine, but had already been paid 1/4 of a million pounds; ultimately it was down to quality, as g4 admitted themselves they hadn’t been able to train people in time, in other words someone said you want 250 million pounds? Can you provide 10,000 security guards, what would a business man say? I think there were something like 15,000 troops and police in the end, along with no-fly zones and the ability for the military to use lethal force when deemed necessary, ie in the air, land or sea. Now, if g4 Qatar said they were providing security for the WC…I think we know they would face issues
MIMH in my opinion I would not want Canadian police involved in any way with the Qatar legal system , or police service. Protection of minorities rights, human rights protection , freedom expression, protecting the rights of Gay persons is what our police do. There for I see no place for our Police service in Qatar, we are fundamentally different in every way. We are not going to be hired thugs for a Qatar
royal family. With Respect.
MIMH never asked for the Canadian officers to help Qatar. You can continue being the small unimportant nation next to US.
PS- Go back to Tim Hortons.
Thank you, its all we really want EH! Lets agree Tim stay to stay on each otheres side of a fence. Fence make good neighbours
Well since my first response was deleted,let’s try this way. There are several types of police forces in Canada,each with various training methods that are all regulated and approved by government bodies. Which ones are you referring to? Would it be the national force? Could it be one of the two provincial forces? Or might it be the City forces? They all catch criminals and protects the rights of citizens. Training of police officers can take up to 3 years and is always ongoing. Perhaps you could quantify what you mean by protecting gay people and being hired thugs? If you do not know the meaning of quantify, just ask. And I was seen as the attacker!
I believe you still are in attack mode Diego. As we say on our side of the pond ” fences” make good neighbors and thank god ours is huge .
So you can’t answer.
Simply put, our knowledge of policing and training at all levels should not be shared with a autocratic state that subjugates over 1 million slave labourers .Perhap we could send Trade Union Organizers ,Human rights activist
This is a country with 2 million population, the majority of them are workers ( 550 k Indians – 400 k Nepalis – 200 k Philippines ) , used by foreign companies to accomplish required projects.
mistakes happens and you learn from your mistakes. the government is trying its best to develop the system used to observe and control all companies excesses towards labours.
Thank you Khaled for a reasoned and responsible comment perhaps if we could and understand the process your government uses to come to decisions on such matters it would help west understand the process therefore we may be able measure its success.
Can they also reach out to foreign law enforcement to teach them how to effectively enforce traffic laws and issue tickets?
Hmmm, unlike UK’s Greater Manchester Police, French Gendarmerie Nationale seem to be more “flexible”
I hope the government also start increasing cyber security readiness.. Im sure ictQatar is preparing for cyber preparedness..
I say hire a few hundred German or South African officers … They have a “good” history of know how in managing large crowds … As for British fans.. The only fans that really do need policing … Put Xanax in their beer
hahaha nice one!
Yes, because Egyptian fans have a fabulous reputation for being so peaceful.
Don’t know much about them and I’m sure there’s been violence in Egyptian games before … But no fans are notoriously known for their racism and hooliganism like the Brits ,, give them a few pints and get th excited and they’re true colors shine …
You need to move on from the Brits – we just get the publicity. Very few people know that the Germans and the Poles re-enacted WW2 behind the train station after the WC2006 game in Dortmund because it wasn’t publicised..Try the Russians, or the Turks, or for a real venomous racist tribal football fan horror-show look no further than the beautiful sunny Mediterranean haven of Croatia.
Now you sound like a Qatari being defense .. “But look at ze Germans they are worest… Or the Croatians … ”
What about those lovely Chelsea lads shoving a poor black guy outside the Paris train … I didn’t learn to swear and spit except from the Brits… 🙂 j/k I love Brits I learned how to read and write English but Brit teachers I owe her majesty’s people a great lot… Although we have them to blame for introducing slavery to Qatar and roundabouts .. I kid I kid.. God what’s wrong with me I can’t help being an behind-hole
The British introduced slavery to Qatar? Keep sipping the Kool-Aid.
Give them a few pints, put them in a ring and watch the show. It’ll be more entertaining that any of those wrestling games.
You really don’t get out much do you? It might explain your racist attitudes towards the British.
Look up the Port Said Stadium Riot, when 72 people were killed, prompting the government to shut down domestic leagues for 2 years and hand out death sentences to some of the rioters (prompting, of course, more rioting). And that is just one of a slew of cases of rioting.
Deleting for stereotyping.
where did i stereotype? where please tell me ? i stated a fact, South Africans and Germans are good at policing people because they have a history on how to manage large groups of ppl? what in my comment did you find so bad you had to delete… ?
Just when I thought Ramadan would be a month of peace and harmony………………….
Unfortunately what goes on DN is tame, Ramadan is normally one of the most violent months around the world. Some of the most brutal battles in history have occurred during Ramadan.
If you look at the figures from the last few international tournaments, the English were up there with the best behaved. Many more arrests from other nations
Maybe coz they weren’t allowed to the events in the first place
Deleting this thread for stereotyping.
“Roughly a million foreign tourists are expected to visit Qatar during the football tournament”
No one who seriously has anything to do with WC Qatar expects anywhere near this many tourists.
Said David the Great.. Doha renowned white expat with a marketable first and last name …
I’m with David the Great. Even WC2006 didn’t get 1 million and that was relatively easily (and relatively cheaply) accessible to over 600 million Europeans, never mind the other continents. Note to the QTA statisticians – the total number of visitors is not the total number of people who attend the matches.
Said the racist.
Sorry buddy. I’m not not a Doha expat; I won’t comment on the white remark, because I won’t dignify your racism.
The logistics planning actually being done is for a few hundred thousand at most and that includes the extra labor. But go ahead have another sip of Kool-Aid and keep reading reading the Gulf Times.
PS–Thanks for keeping me entertained during a series of dull, jet-lagged business trips. I’ll be sure to tune in next time I’m on the road or passing through. Until then, Ramadan Mubarak.
Deleting for attack.
Qatar has over one million poor labours, are they the million tourist they mean ?
from what i heard one month ago – i guess
a new city -near industrial area- supposed to be opened in 2016 to occupied 250,000 worker among other cities are planned to be opened
wont be needed now though will it ?
Too early to tell. The knives are out but striking them home will be another matter.
What makes it harder is that normally you will have fans from two nations in one city at anyone time during a normal World Cup. Here you will have fans of 32 nations in one city. Carnage
This is the 2022 World Cup? The one that won’t be in Qatar?
If we pray hard enough this Ramadan our prayers will hopefully be answered and it will go somewhere else like the states or Australia .. Then come sept and half the expat community of Doha can get sacked … Leaving only those who actually do have the qualifications and skills to add value and develop the country and its economy and do very much deserve their tax free pay
I’ll enjoy very much watching the news of which one of your countrymen will be jailed for their corruption. Should be entertaining.
Me too id love to see corrupt qataris locked up.. Whether they were involved with FIFA or any other business..
But let’s face it.. The real corruption here is FIFA and those running FIFA not the bidding countries .. FIFA and its European leaders created a corrupt organization making it almost impossible to host the event without some form of direct or indirect kick back to FIFA leaders.. I think we’ll see FIFA and its European heads in jail before anyone else..
Well said, the only quibble I have is that I would very like to see all the corrupt FIFA leadership go, not just the corrupt European ones. The senior VP is African, and the VPS are more than half African and Asian. No geographic region has any special claim to corruption in that organization.
Being. South African I was reading SAnews 24 online and saw the article on the SA whilstle blower who was murdered the day before he was to give evidence in court about corruption with FIFA. Really shocking if this true!
that’s sad, but good on SA to come out and admit they had to make some form of payment to win the bid…
Have you explored this suggestion with the legacy committee? I’m sure they’d be really impressed.
My prayers are between me, my god, and the dozen other losers trolling dn comment section… I’d like to keep it this way 🙂
“[half the expat community] don’t have the qualifications and skills to add value and develop the country and its economy’.
Then why have you let them come here, for goodness sake?
At what point does Qatar take responsibility for what goes on in Qatar???
because qatar is known to pay very little for mediocre expats who provide mediocre results .. i agree it is a very much qatar mentality fault and all responsibility falls on qatar as they always seek the lowest bidder, cheapest pay, least costly solution… than blame the results on those working on it… pay peanuts get monkeys… and that’s what have a bunch of monkeys running around a zoo
I’m liking you more and more each day…well said.
Well should I respond in the negative or positive today? Hmmm…positive that Qatar’s senior security/police managers identify they have a skills gap and need training and development. Well done. The negative…I’ll leave that for others today!