*Qatar charities targeted as part of smear campaign: al-Marri
The false accusations made by the blockading countries regarding the involvement of Qatari humanitarian organisations in terrorism are part of the smear campaign these charities are constantly subjected to, Chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) Dr Ali bin Smaikh al-Marri has said.
Al-Marri called upon the United Nations to take a firmer position against the blockading countries' violations of human rights by documenting the implications of the siege in the annual report of the Secretary-General. This came during a series of meetings al-Marri held with UN Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Ursula Mueller, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations Joao Vale, a number of ranking officials in human rights and representatives of a number of European countries.
The NHRC chairman described the blockading countries' listing of Qatari humanitarian organisations on their terrorism list as a dangerous precedent in the GCC region. He said such moves were aimed at disrupting the developmental work done by these organisations and would deprive poor communities of the support they desperately need.
He called on enhancing co-operation between the committee and the UN to give humanitarian work the protection it needs as it looks to help people gain their economic, social, and developmental rights. He said the committee was ready to enter into a partnership with the UN in its mission to eradicate poverty.
Al-Marri also called on the UN to be more active in ending the violations of the blockading countries and to compensate the victims of the violations, before discussing any political resolution. He also expressed the fears of NHRC regarding the insistence of the blockading countries on violating the rights of the people of the GCC, especially that they have not responded to any international report. They have also ignored calls from members of the international community to end the sufferings of those affected by the blockade, he said.
During the meeting with Vale, the NHRC chief praised the role of the EU in the crisis and their clear understanding of the violations resulting from the blockade. He presented the latest reports of the violations documented by the NHRC, stressing that the blockading countries have reached an unprecedented level of audacity in ignoring international customs and the calls made by the UN and other international organisations to separate humanitarian issues from political ones.
Al-Marri also stressed in his meeting with leading human rights officials on the importance of continuing the pressure for an end to the arbitrary, unilateral measures taken by the blockading countries against the people and residents of Qatar, as well as continuing the pressure to compensate the victims of the blockade. He also highlighted that a lot of work must be done to include the humanitarian violations in any political settlement in the upcoming Camp David deliberations.
Al-Marri said that leaders of the blockading countries have stressed from time to time that they did not plan to lift the unjust measures , despite the reports released by Human Rights Watch and other humanitarian organisations documenting the violations.
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