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A new Emir for Qatar

July 01, 2013

The Emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani is poised to hand over power to his son Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani . This decision will allow the younger generation to manage business in the country which has a large petroleum wealth and the highest personal income in the world.

The Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr al-Thani, who was the most important figure in the modern era of Qatar, is also stepping down with the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani. It is expected that he will be responsible of funds investments management in Qatar.

This change was expected, the news about it emanated from the royal family itself as the emir suffers health problems and needs to rest from the stress and the daily concerns of power.

It is known that Emir Hamad, who overthrew his father because of the bad management of the country and the prevalence of corruption, came to power with an almost empty state treasury. In few years, he was able to transform the emirate into an oasis of investment and he could reinforce the international role of Qatar in the field of production and export of gas. He also managed to give this small emirate an international reputation on the field of foreign policy considering its important role in finding a solution to the political crisis in Lebanon in 2008, terminating the Lockerbie crisis and handling the "Arab Spring" in Libya, Egypt and Tunisia. It also supports and funds the opposition in Syria. He made from Doha a new head for Hamas leaders, and a forum for negotiations between the Taliban and the United States on the political future in Afghanistan.

On the economic level, the emirate succeeded in being an active partner in the largest international institutions and companies. It purchased the largest commercial warehouses and most luxurious touristic hotels in Europe, America and some Arab countries.

As soon as Emir Tamim received power, he formed a new government of competent staff who have knowledge and experience and simultaneously represent all the tribes and clans to keep the Qatari family balance which preserves stability.

In his first appearance on the media, he promised to maintain what Qatar has made so far  from progress, prosperity, development and security. Throughout his speech, he addressed the neighboring and Western countries to affirm its commitment to continue the cooperation with them without forgetting Palestine which he considers as his central cause.

Sheikh Tamim relationship with Iran is still fade, because it accused Doha of being responsible of the establishment of an espionage network  in Tehran, also how the way  he will dealing with the Syrian issue taking into account that Qatar has an important place in the opposition. He has not yet clarified  neither his opinion towards the worldwide movement, "the Muslim Brotherhood," as Qatar is hosting its spiritual leader, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, nor his position towards France which accused Qatar of supporting fundamentalist organizations in some African countries.

What is happening in Qatar is a new experience that will be led by a young man. It is still early to evaluate its success because the challenges are large and complex as a result of the difficult conditions at the international level, the severe financial crisis and the emerging global multi polarity strongly competing with each other on how to draw a map for the new Middle East.





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