Browsing 'khalid al-attiyah' News

Ministerie van Buitenlands

Dr. Khalid Al Attiyah, Minister of State for Defense Affairs

The recent Gulf dispute that has isolated Qatar is nothing short of a “bloodless declaration of war,” the country’s Minister of State for Defense Affairs has said.

Dr. Khalid bin Mohammed Al Attiyah made the remarks to Al Araby Al Jadeed yesterday ahead of a meeting with Turkish officials in Ankara.

According to the Qatar-backed publication, he said:

“The countries imposing the blockade have declared a bloodless war. What else do you call closing land, sea and air borders to harm people and damage the social fabric of the Gulf?

Not even cattle and camels have been spared from this oppression,” he added, referring to livestock stuck on Qatar’s closed border with Saudi Arabia.

Deadline approaches

The comments come as Qatar prepares to respond to a long list of demands from its neighbors.

Khalid Albaih

For illustrative purposes only.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the UAE has given the country 10 days to acquiesce to shutting down Al Jazeera, toning down its relationship with Iran and cutting ties with certain political groups, among other things.

Qatari officials have until tomorrow (July 2) to respond, but have already rejected most if not all the demands.

Qatar was also ordered to shut down a growing Turkish military base in Doha, which it has refused to do.

Christopher Hall/Wikimedia

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

For his part, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called the demand a “disrespect to Turkey.”

The Gulf dispute has brought Qatar and Turkey even closer together over the past month.

Fresh Turkish imports have replaced many Saudi products on grocery shelves. And waves of Turkish troops have been arriving in Qatar for “joint military exercises.”


Khalid Al Attiyah, Qatar's Minister of State for Defense, visits the Qatari Armed Forces' detachment stationed in the Saudi city of Najran, near the Yemen border.


Khalid Al Attiyah, Qatar’s Minister of State for Defense, visits a Qatari Armed Forces’ detachment.

Qatar’s Minister of State for Defense, Khalid Al Attiyah, recently visited Qatari soldiers stationed in the Saudi city of Najran, near the Yemen border.

Qatar has committed hundreds of troops, as well as helicopters and armored vehicles, to a Saudi-led coalition.

The group is backing forces loyal to exiled Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, who are fighting Houthi rebels.

Al Attiyah’s visit follows several days of confusion about the future role of UAE troops in Yemen.

Last week, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan – Abu Dhabi’s crown prince and deputy supreme commander of the UAE armed forces – published a tweet that quoted the country’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash, as saying the “war is over” for the Emirati troops.

However, Gargash later said his comments were “taken out of context.”

With the United Nations estimating that 13 million Yemenis are in need of “immediate life-saving assistance,” international criticism has been mounting over the impact of the conflict on civilians.

The Saudi-led coalition has previously said it respects international humanitarian law.


Photo for illustrative purposes only.

David Rodriguez Martin/Flickr

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

A project to build drones in Qatar has reached “advanced stages, with the devices expected to hit the market as early as next year, the nation’s Minister of State for Defense Affairs has said.

According to QNA, Khalid bin Mohammed Al Attiyah said that the country has been working on a drone production project with Germany, as part of efforts to shore up Qatar’s defenses.

He made the remarks on the sidelines of the fifth Doha International Maritime Defence Exhibition & Conference (DIMDEX), which opened today.

It is unclear what the Qatar-made drones will be used for, or whether they will be sold to other countries.

Coping with ‘risk’

Qatar’s armed forces have been training with unmanned aerial vehicles for years.

In 2011, the country reportedly bought its first drones – 10 mini ones – from a Turkish defense manufacturer.

Qatar purchased 10 of the Turkish Bayraktar mini unmanned aerial vehicles in 2011.

Bayhaluk / Wikipedia

Qatar purchased 10 of the Turkish Bayraktar mini unmanned aerial vehicles in 2011.

The short-range devices were used for reconnaissance and surveillance missions.

QNA also reported Al Attiyah as encouraging integration of defense systems across nations to “collectively cope with the risks” in the region.

Also today at DIMDEX, Qatar inked a memo of understanding with France on an existing order of 24 Rafale fighter jets.

The deal had been struck last year, but payment was apparently delayed.

Qatar finally made a down payment in December and the new agreement seems to indicate that the country is serious about buying the €6.7 billion jets.