Qatar has been able to direct its resources towards high-quality education, better healthcare and innovative research and technology, among others, HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Defence Affairs Dr Khalid bin Mohamed al-Attiyah has said.
“Today, we are living in an era of digital revolution as against the Industrial Revolution centuries ago. Challenges have changed and technology has changed. The global and regional security situation and the nature of wars and conflicts have changed. It is an era where people direct the state rather than the state directs its people. Qatar has well taken care of the changes and has been preparing accordingly for several years,” HE Dr al-Attiyah noted while taking part in a plenary session on the second day of Doha Forum 2019.
He was joined by Turkish Minister of Defence Hulusi Akar in a discussion that was moderated by ambassador Wolfgang Ischinger, chairman, Munich Security Conference.
“We have a lot of concerns because we live in an era of technological development, and we have many future challenges that must be identified and prepared for, in addition to agreeing on a set of rules to deal with it and with the new world order. Otherwise, we will face many obstacles,” he explained.
He also pointed out that in the modern times, nothing can be hidden. “We do not hide anything from the people. Technology has made it impossible and we must open up to others to face internal crises and to have a clear dialogue with neighbours. If we are not open to our neighbours, it will be a challenge and a danger to future generations,” he said.
Regarding the Gulf crisis, HE Dr al-Attiyah said Qatar always stands for discussion and negotiation. “Qatar has made its position clear from Day 1. We have always said that dialogue and negotiations are the best way to resolve the differences while maintaining that our sovereignty is non-questionable."
As for the relationship with Iran, he said Qatar believes that the only way to draw a legal framework to achieve stability in the region is to conduct direct dialogue and negotiations with neighbours and all parties concerned with the region's security and issues.
He also noted that the Syrian issue is a complicated one, noting that the people of Syria deserve a better life. He noted that Qatar has done everything possible to conduct mediation with all parties by using its relations with all of them.
On his part, Akar talked about the role of alliances in Turkey, especially after the decisions that shook Nato members and the relationship between Turkey and its partners. He stressed that Turkey is still inside Nato, attending to all requests, participating in all operations and supporting Nato.
"Since the 1990s, we have been doing our best to develop a missile defence system and we need to buy this system from Russia after we had to," he said. "We are making a great effort to explain our current situation and find a solution to it, we are a key partner of Nato and paid $5bn in the framework of our commitment to this partnership and have acted in the interest of our country, so we have purchased the S-400 system because we need it, and are aware of our responsibility towards Nato and there are no attempts to get out of it."
On the situation in Syria, he said there is no failure or success for the international community to remove Bashar al-Assad and put an end to the conflict there, but there is a process in which "we can accomplish what we can, stressing the importance of uniting efforts and taking the necessary measures towards this crisis".
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