Interview Given by Dr. Ibrahim Al-Naimi, chairman of the DICID For Qatari newspaper Alarabi
2017-08-15
- An international symposium on "Crisis and siege" and a round table on the role of communities during the crisis.
- All parties must sit down for dialogue without intransigence or imposing preconditions Qatar has suffered great injustice by the closest people.
- The political will of the States that imposed the embargo is unfortunately absent.Aljazeera channel was not exposed to the Gulf blockade states before the crisis.
- It is unfortunate to see that Israel's demands are compatible with the countries of the blockade against Aljazeera channel.
- Many international figures will visit Qatar soon to express their opposition to the unjust blockade.
- Dialogue must end with the adoption of a new constitution among the co-operation states to avoid similar crises in the future.

- How did you interact at the Doha Religious Center with the developments of the siege crisis against Qatar?

The crisis was a surprise to us, like the rest of the people of Qatar, especially as it coincided with the month of Ramadan. We were all deeply affected not only by the severing of diplomatic relations, but by the repercussions of the crisis, which caused the severing of relations between the Gulf peoples and the splitting of families and families.
Of course, the stated causes of the crisis are fabricated and lacking any credibility. At the Doha Center for Interreligious Dialogue, we have always been accustomed to dialogue and coexistence. We have been accustomed to working together with dialogue centers in the countries of siege for many years. We are really surprised by the crisis, especially as we worked together to solve crises and problems in other countries. To this day, many people have not understood what happened and what is happening. We continue to advocate for dialogue.

- How was the interaction of dialogue centers in neighboring blockade countries before the crisis?

Frankly, we did not try to communicate with those centers, because we in Qatar, affected by the crisis, and we believe, so far that the crisis can only be solved through dialogue.
We think it is important to reach a common vision, shared by all parties, as a starting point for the crisis solution. But I am very sure that there are many people who are in charge of dialogue centers in the countries of the blockade are not completely satisfied with what happened, and what is happening, and believe that the damage will be greater in the countries of the blockade, more than on Qatar.

- Are the conditions for dialogue to overcome the crisis still available?

Of course, we should not miss any opportunity for dialogue, to avoid a bigger crisis, with all the damage done to the Gulf society, not just Qatar, and the longer the crisis lasts, the more damage will be multiplied. Future foundations must be established to avoid a recurrence of the crisis in the future.
I prefer to call it the principles of dialogue or its origins. Assets are the rules that control things. The principles of dialogue are the rules that regulate the dialogue before and after it begins and ends.
In my opinion, the most important assets of dialogue are two: first: science, and the second: in order to reach the right without rivalry or fanaticism or hue. No one should speak about something that he does not know.

- What are the chances of a successful dialogue in light of the insistence of the embargo countries to impose strict conditions that are not negotiable?

Dialogue remains possible. As the Gulf states were continuing before the crisis, it makes no sense to say today that there is no possibility of dialogue. On the other hand, objectivity must be justified. Dialogue must end with the adoption of a new constitution among the GCC states to avoid similar crises in the future, because what has happened is totally unacceptable. The State of Qatar has been severely oppressed by the nearest people to us. Especially since the peoples of the Gulf have always been eager for peace and coexistence throughout history. Once there is a clear political will from the countries of the blockade, the crisis can be resolved within days, no matter how long the crisis continues.

- How did you find the positions of the global dialogue centers and personalities from the crisis, and did you receive support for the State of Qatar against the siege imposed on it?

All the personalities and dialogue centers that have continued with us are sympathetic to Qatar in this crisis without exception. They spoke highly of the country's position and treated our country with the current crisis. They emphasized that it was a typical approach of leadership to the people.
We have received numerous communications and messages from many international organizations, specialized centers from Oxford University, Yale University, Harvard University, even US senators, many international personalities who have been to Qatar and the Interfaith Dialogue Center; All of them showed great interest in the repercussions of the crisis and declared their absolute support for Qatar against the unjust siege imposed on it. We have a desire to support dialogue to resolve the crisis. We have told them that dialogue for the State of Qatar is essential to the state's being.

- The Center pays great attention to communicating with citizens and residents of different nationalities. What is your message to them to deal with the crisis?

Our mission is clear; to respond positively to what is happening around them, to absorb the crisis without affecting them, to be positive citizens, and to focus on developing work and increasing production. And do not forget that His Highness the Emir praised the interaction of citizens and residents alike with the crisis. The State of Qatar did not suppress freedom of expression and opinion, but allowed everyone to react to the crisis, and did not impose sanctions on those who sympathize or express their opinion.

- What steps and solutions do you propose to deal with the crisis?

We are in the process of preparing for an important symposium entitled "Dialogue and Blockade”, in September 2017. The meeting will discuss and explore the mechanisms of dialogue to resolve crises from the perspective of religions in general, and Islam in particular. We will host specialists and jurists from Qatar University, the Union of Muslim Scholars, political figures and Qatari national actors.
We are also preparing the community roundtable, which will address its role during the crisis, in the presence of all communities in Qatar. We must document the role of communities in studies, and pass them on to future generations, as lessons that we should understand from the crisis.

- How do you read calls calling for the closure of Al-Jazeera network channels from the countries of the blockade, on the pretext of inciting violence?

First, it should be noted that the island was not subjected to the embargoed States before this crisis, except Egypt because of what has been exposed to it. If this requirement was to protect a regime that led a counterrevolution, this is not appropriate for the policies of the three Gulf states. Those who have not had the news of the island, he has many alternatives. And countries that are afraid of a television channel, this is a disaster in fact!
We are living in a world where channels of communication and expression are developing. There is no need to talk about other channels being promoted by the embargo countries, which since its inception have been aimed at destroying Gulf relations and Arab-Islamic values.

- How do you understand the statement of an Israeli minister when he says that the demand to close the Aljazeera Network channel comes in response to the demands of the countries of the blockade?

This is a real tragedy. This is yet another proof that the States of the embargo are actually floundering in their positions when they agree with our common enemy. The mere silence reflects the consensus of those countries with statements by Israeli officials.

- In general, does the world understand the need for dialogue or the violence around us has gone beyond this?

In fact, dialogue has become a real necessity of the times, and the very the only solution to overcome all problems resulting from the difference of view between parties or states should be managed through dialogue, negotiation , and other diplomatic channels, to avoid to be turned into conflict and collision. Today, however, we see that cultural, economic and political dialogue has become an indispensable cultural necessity for the development and advancement of life. Religious dialogue is undoubtedly a more urgent necessity to face all form of extremism. The peaceful solutions, will necessarily reach to common human values such as coexistence, tolerance, cooperation and peace, acceptance of the other and recognition of the religious and civil rights and freedom.
Many social issues need effective solutions, and without it, society's components have been disrupted, relations have been broken, power has been weakened, and stability has been lost.
The first way to deal with our social issues lies in dialogue based on love, respect, tolerance, fruitful cooperation and joint action among the members of society.

- Over the past 10 years, what have been achieved?

Over ten years, I will certainly find it difficult to detail what the Doha International Center for Interfaith Dialogue has done, but I can sum it up as follows: First: Annual Conferences: An intellectual and consultative forum between intellectuals and representatives of major religions (Islam, Christianity, and Judaism) around the world. The first interfaith dialogue conference was held in Doha in 2003 and was followed by the second conference in 2004. The third conference in 2005 recommended the establishment of a center for interfaith dialogue. This was the start, and the conferences were held, until the Doha International Center for Interfaith Dialogue opened in May 2007. The conference was held annually and the last of these conferences was the twelfth conference in February 2016.