(New York) – The Counter Extremism Project (CEP) today called on Qatar to cease its financial and political support for the terror group Hamas, whose mismanagement, corruption, and neglect has brought crushing poverty to the people of Gaza in the 10 years since it violently took control of the coastal enclave.
Qatar has a long history of supporting and harboring terrorists from Hamas and various other groups, including the Taliban, al-Qaeda, and the Muslim Brotherhood. On June 5, Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, and the Maldives severed diplomatic and commercial ties with Qatar as a result of that country’s support for extremism and terrorism. Several other countries have since taken similar action, including Senegal, Chad, Mauritania, and Niger.
Established in 1987 as an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas has ruled Gaza since 2007. Hamas has launched thousands of Qassam rockets at Israeli towns and used aid from Qatar to build tunnels from which to launch attacks. Today, essential services in Gaza are rationed and residents are forced to manage with less than three hours a day of electricity.
In a May 1 press conference in Qatar, Hamas unveiled a new policy document that does not mention its connections to the Brotherhood. However, the new document does not supersede the original 1988 charter, which declares Hamas to be “one of the wings of the Moslem Brotherhood in Palestine.” Neither does the new document change Hamas’s commitment to violent “armed resistance” against Israel or the “liberation” of all of Palestine “from the river to the sea.”