If we look at the changes in the world over the last 100 years, we see that there have been many. There are changes in the world order that have changed the course of history, especially in the last 100 years. After the end of the world wars and the end of the Cold War with the collapse of the Soviet Union, there was one dominant force in the world, the United States of America. In 2010-2011, China emerged as an international power and later Russia emerged after attacking Ukraine.
Today, if we look at the problems in the Middle East, we see that there is a trend towards public opinion. There are many problems and crises. The Palestinian issue was not seen as a major and central issue for the Middle East and Arabs.
Others talk about the new Middle East and other forces talk about the surrounding circumstances, and crises are the prelude to the deal of the century.
The State of Qatar has emerged with policies that support the people's rights. Such policies are unaccepted and disapproved of by regional powers, who exploit this opportunity to impose their hegemony and policies to gnain control over the region.
The other reason is that Qatar has a young and committed leadership towards its people. We all saw the support for the leadership from the beginning of the crisis from both Qatari citizens and residents.
Also, we witnessed the continued demands of the Gulf and accusations towards the State of Qatar to try and isolate it from the international community and regional surroundings. These efforts were attempts to isolate the country's view of changes in this region, and an attempt to restrain Qatari foreign policy from playing a role in spreading its views, which it was doing prior to this crisis. Political critics have recognized that, since the beginning of this crisis, the State of Qatar has become preoccupied with its own crisis than with regional issues. This is normal, especially when the issue is related to the essence of a nation.
Regarding our issue in the State of Qatar. How can this crisis be resolved? We believe that events in the region are all related crises. The State of Qatar sees the need for a new regional agreement based on an essential rule, the first being: respect the sovereignty of states and not interfere in their internal affairs. It should be based on regional security demands that guarantee the protection of small and large states, and ensure that no one interferes in them. These main principles of cooperation should be based on cooperation in the fields of development and economy. This solution was recommended by His Highness the Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, at the Munich Security Conference, as a new regional security vision in which all players must interact to reach an agreement.
Today, we see the international community's strong reaction to the Iranian nuclear agreement and the American withdrawal. If the Iranian nuclear agreement collapses, the State of Qatar will be affected. We see that Saudi Arabia is talking about and threatening to develop a nuclear weapon if Iran develops their weapons. This could happen in the UAE, as they have started to build a peaceful nuclear program. But this program could turn into a non-peaceful program.
The only solution for stability in the region is for the leaders of the Arab countries to have a comprehensive framework, that includes all the countries of the region. This framework should be based on protecting the common security of the region and common interests and supporting the economy and development.
We are certain that there are many countries that don't want such wars. Unfortunately, there are other forces in the region that don't see solutions for these problems. They find that these crises strengthen and consolidate their positions and governing systems. However, we in Qatar, look at these crises as ticking time bombs that could lead to a more difficult collapse of their regimes. This will have greater repercussions on our small countries that may be affected by such collapses.
Is there a relation between the major changes in the region, and the Gulf Crisis and blockade on Qatar?
What is happening in the State of Qatar is an integral part of the workings of the Middle East. If we try to analyze what happened after the blockade on Qatar and what the fundamental changes that occurred in the region are, we will see that the presence of Qatar as an active player in the region will contribute to the consolidation of the vision we have for the region. This vision needs to be rearranged according to the national vision, and in accordance with the international visions.
The other issue with the blockade on Qatar and current changes happening at the Gulf level is that everyone is aware that there are policy changes in Saudi Arabia that are unacceptable under normal circumstances. If we look at it, we see a classic theory of, "if you want to make internal changes you must create an outside enemy." Unfortunately, the State of Qatar was chosen as the external enemy in order to enforce these policies, not only to Saudi Arabia but to the UAE and Bahrain as well.
If you look at the relationship hours or days prior to the blockade, you will not see any signs of such a crisis on the horizon. How do you justify such a crisis if there were no prior indicators? We believe that there is a direct link and that the issue went beyond the scope of a crisis to the issue of a hostile policy adopted against Qatar.
Today, we don't talk about the Gulf Crisis as a Gulf crisis. There is a hostile policy adopted by some neighboring countries against the State of Qatar. This has become a behavioral pattern of theirs and not only a case of them wanting the implementation of a specific demand.
How did Qatari diplomacy succeed in managing this confrontation?
There are several factors that contributed to the success of Qatari diplomacy, the first being Allah, then the fact that we were right made our case different. We, in the State of Qatar, see that our case is right. We set out from the beginning of the crisis to deal with this crisis in a civilized manner, and that we will not stoop to the level of other countries. We also believe in international law, and international organizations will ensure fairness for the State of Qatar in this crisis. The directives of His Highness the Emir, from the beginning of the crisis, have been as such and have mainly served us internationally. The third factor is the home front. No country would stand with the State of Qatar if its home front was not united against the aggression towards Qatar. Everyone has realized that what the State of Qatar has done over the past ten years in the form of the transformation of its society has strengthened our home front and raised the level of public awareness of the State of Qatar. Our people have, thankfully, overcome this crisis with this awareness and unity expressed in supporting their country today. The threat to the State of Qatar is existential and no citizen or resident of the State of Qatar will be subject to such threats. Everyone has resisted with courage and dignity. We commend all the components of the Qatari society, whether it was the media, academic institutions, civil society organizations, regular citizens and government officials. Most of the people of Qatar are public sector employees. We see how the public sector responded to this crisis by not being affected, and not allowing it to affect the normal lives of citizens. We believe that everyone is a partner in this victory.
What has the Kuwaiti mediation efforts reached?
From the beginning of the crisis, there have been mediation efforts by His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. He made a personal effort to come to Qatar, go to the blockading countries and try to engage in a dialogue of understanding. Unfortunately, every call for dialogue was answered by the blockading countries in a way that rejects the principle of dialogue and rejects the principle of explanations for this crisis. The international community was surprised by their list of 13 demands.
The State of Qatar did not adopt any hostile behavior towards any country and did not reject or close the door on any efforts by the Kuwaiti mediation, but rather it supported these efforts. We continue this support and welcome these efforts, but as long as there is no desire or sincere intention from the blockading countries, then there won't be constructive dialogue or helpful results in resolving this crisis. The most recent effort being the GCC Summit, which was attended by His Highness the Emir. The blockading countries declined to attend the meeting in the final hours, and not days, prior to its start. The State of Qatar is always welcoming, but we are not presenting a blank cheque for them to come and impose conditions upon us. We have been clear from the beginning of the crisis, and we are ready to engage in dialogue and address their concerns that resulted in this crisis according to international law. However, we will not allow anyone to dictate the sovereignty of the State of Qatar, we will not allow anyone to harm Qatari citizens and their capabilities, and we will not accept doing something that violates international law and puts Qatar in the category of rebel countries, like some countries in the region. We see that these conditions are reasonable and whenever the blockading countries agree to them we will be available to them.
Despite the fact that the blockade violated international conventions and the many violations in the field of human rights, Qatar has thankfully emerged stronger than before. We now find international bilateral agreements, economic diversification, and dependence on the domestic market. What if there were to be a reconciliation with the blockading countries, will the State of Qatar continue the same approach or will it revert to the old policy that existed prior to the blockade?
Our strategy since the beginning of the crisis was based on three main factors. The first is strengthening national security by ensuring food security, providing medical supplies and supporting the country's resilience program in the face of external challenges. The second factor is the human factor by taking on the issues of citizens affected by the blockade in legal and internationally recognized ways. The third is the political and international factor which entails strengthening bilateral relations with the State of Qatar and not allowing the blockading countries to isolate the State of Qatar form its international surroundings.
These factors contributed mainly to the transition of the State from one stage to another, and from one vision to another.
We hope there will be reconciliation, and that things will go back to the way they were. However, we do not mean the return of policies to what they were. The policy of the State of Qatar adopted a clear approach, we do not want to attack anyone, and we will not accept any state to affect the existence of the State of Qatar, whether economically, militarily, or from a security side.