Foreign relations of Qatar

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Qatar achieved full independence from the United Kingdom on 3 September 1971.[1] Arab states were among the first to recognize Qatar, and the country gained admittance to the United Nations and the Arab League in the same year. Qatar established diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union, and Communist China in 1988. The country was an early member of OPEC and a founding member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

Over the past two decades, Qatar has grown its international profile and punched above its weight in international affairs. It has been "very confident of itself and believes that it has the capabilities and capacity to adopt an independent foreign policy."[2] The country is a member of numerous international organizations and maintains bilateral relations around the globe because, as Islam Hassan Research Analyst at Center for International and Regional Studies- Georgetown University in Qatar argues, the monarchy believes that a way of regime survival here is to have recognition on the regional and international level."[3]

Qatar also uses its massive wealth to purchase influence abroad; its state-funded news media company Al Jazeera serves as a means of exerting international soft power. Qatar buys influence in Western countries through investments and donations. For example, the country has made large donations to the prominent Washington-based think tank the Brookings Institution, purchased British retailer Harrods, and donated $1 million to the Clinton Foundation while Hillary Clinton was U.S. Secretary of State.[4]

Multilateral relations[edit]

Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the emir of Qatar from 1995 to 2013, helped establish Qatar's reputation as an influential player in Middle East politics. The first major move in this regard was the founding of Al Jazeera,[5] a state-owned news media company.

Qatar has also cultivated close relationships with Western powers, particularly the United States and the United Kingdom. Al Udeid Air Base hosts American and British air forces. Qatar has invested extensively in London real estate, and the country has also made donations to prominent research centers in the United States.[6][7] At the same time, Qatar maintains ties to Western adversaries, including Iran, Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, and extremist elements in Syria.[8][9][10]

Qatar has a population of around 1.8 million people, however only 280,000 of these are citizens.[11] The vast majority of the population are migrant laborers who suffer severe human rights abuses including unfit living conditions, abuse by employers, and seizure of passports and other immigration documents.[12] These human rights abuses have caused tensions between Qatar and liberal western democracies.[13] It is also one of the few countries in which citizens do not have to pay any taxes.[14][15]

Qatar is a member of Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, Gulf Cooperation Council, OPEC and the Council of Arab Economic Unity.

Regional relations[edit]

According to American sociologist and historical social scientist Immanuel Wallerstein, Qatar is seeking to become a major regional player in Middle East politics. Wallerstein has argued that Qatar aimed to do the same in the Syrian Civil War, and has provided support to extremist elements in Syria.[16] According to Wallerstein, Qatar and Saudi Arabia are competing for influence in regional politics.

Qatar has been influential in political and religious upheavals in the Middle East. Qatar supported several rebel groups during the Arab Spring financially and by asserting global influence through its expanding news group, Al Jazeera.[17][18][19]

Qatar's support for the Muslim Brotherhood and allied groups throughout the Middle East, as well as positions taken by Al Jazeera have led to increasing tensions with other Gulf States. On 5 March 2014, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahrain withdrew their ambassadors from Qatar in protest at what they claimed was Qatar's non-compliance with a November 2013 agreement not to "interfere" in countries' internal affairs.[20][21][22]

Some financial economists have interpreted the 2014 Saudi-Qatari rift as the tangible political sign of a growing economic rivalry between oil and natural gas producers, which could “have deep and long-lasting consequences” beyond the Middle East.[23]

In March 2014 Qatar made overtures to Oman in order to counteract the influence of Saudi Arabia on politics in the region.[24]

In April 2017, an alleged hack of state media led to stories quoting the Emir as enquiring US resentment towards Iran and remarking on Hamas. Doha reported it as false and gave no indication on where it originated. However, news organizations in the region reported the emir's comments as fact. This led to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Yemen, Egypt and Bahrain cutting diplomatic ties with Qatar on 5 June 2017.[25][26]

Peace brokering and peacekeeping activities[edit]

The onset of the Arab spring in January 2011 complicated Qatar’s ability to mediate having forced Gulf leaders to side with revolutionaries or the longstanding autocratic regimes. Sheikh Hamad stated in that Qatar would support the uprisings, a position that clashed with neighboring Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Qatar provided extensive support, in funding and weapons, to Libyan revolutionaries and aided in the removal of Muammar Gaddafi by mobilising Arab support behind NATO airstrikes. In Egypt, Qatar supported President Mohamed Morsi and has suffered from strained relations with President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi following Morsi’s removal. In Syria, Qatar has provided arms and funding to various opposition groups.[27]

Starting in 2013 Qatar was accused of financing Islamic extremists in Syria, a charge which has been refuted by Emir Sheikh Tamim on CNN and by Foreign Minister Khaled Al-Attiyah in an opinion piece in the British newspaper The Daily Telegraph. According to the Royal United Services Institute, Qatar plays an important role in Syria and Iraq as an interlocutor between Western powers and resistant groups that cannot be engaged directly. This role is consistent with Qatar’s efforts as an interlocutor with the Taliban in Afghanistan, hosting a small Embassy in Doha where US officials are able to meet with the Taliban behind closed doors.[28]

Prior to the abdication of Emir Sheikh Hamad, Qatar’s mediation was fronted by the Qatari Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Ahmad Abdullah Al Mahmud. On 4 May 2009, the Qatari Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Ahmad Abdullah Al Mahmud announced that Chad and Sudan had agreed to end hostilities against each other and to normalize relations during Qatari-mediated talks in Doha; however the agreement quickly broke down.[29] Qatar also brokered an agreement between the Sudanese government and the strongest Darfur rebel group, the Justice and Equality Movement, in Doha in February 2010.[30] The agreement fell apart in May 2010 and the conflict is ongoing.

Qatar hosted a donors conference to help rebuild war-ravaged Darfur in April 2013.[31]

In June 2010, Qatari peacekeeping forces deployed in the disputed Ras Doumeira area on the border between Djibouti and Eritrea after the latter withdrew from the area. The intention was to help start bilateral negotiations and solve the territorial dispute which had turned violent.[32] Qatar withdrew its 450 troops from the Djibouti-Eritrea border in June 2017 after the two countries severed ties with Qatar.[33]

Cultural and religious activities[edit]

In a controversial bidding process marred by bribery and corruption scandals, Qatar was selected to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Qatar will be the first Middle Eastern country to host the popular international sporting event. Qatar-funded Qatar Airways has gone on an aggressive expansion campaign by competing with nearby Emirates Airline to reach more destinations and serve more passengers.[34]

The sixty-sixth session of the United Nations General Assembly was presided over by former permanent representative of Qatar to the UN Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser.[35] The country has not accepted compulsory International Court of Justice jurisdiction.

In September 2013, Qatar funded 70% of a US$16 million mosque to be built in Slovenia (the only mosque in that country). It is due for completion in 2016. Due to its natural resource revenue and low indigenous population, Qatar has been able to take bold moves in expanding its global presence, particularly its regional role following the Arab Spring funding the oppositions in the Libyan Civil War and the Syrian civil war, as well as the Islamist government of Egypt (which was opposed by other fellow GCC states).[36]

Foreign aid[edit]

Qatar’s international aid program has expanded dramatically since the beginning of 2010, and focuses heavily on the Arab world, most notably in the humanitarian crises in Syria and Gaza.[37]

According to the UN OCHA’s Financial Tracking Service, Qatar’s international aid increased from less than $10 million annually in the pre-Arab Spring period to the hundreds of millions following the event.[38]

For example in 2012, according to the Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the country donated more than QAR3 billion (or c. £524 million) through governmental and non-governmental aid to nearly 100 countries across the globe.[39]

Qatari leadership has since pledged publicly to reduce suffering of victims and to achieve and support global partnerships for the achievement of foreign countries’ Millennium Development Goals. The state is engaged in investments in a wide range of humanitarian and developmental sectors.[39]

Bilateral relations[edit]

Africa[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
 Algeria See Algeria–Qatar relations
  • Algeria has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Algiers.
 Benin
 Burkina Faso 1988

Relations between the two countries were inaugurated in 1988. Qatar agreed to donate $13.8 million towards the construction of a cancer hospital in Burkina Faso in December 2017.[41] The same month, the Qatar Development Fund allocated $814,000 towards the commencement of humanitarian projects in Burkina Faso.[42]

 Chad

Qatar shuttered the Chadian embassy in Doha in August 2017, two months after Chad broke off diplomatic ties with Qatar over the Qatar diplomatic crisis, with Chad claiming that Qatar was attempting to destabilize it via Libya.[43] Bilateral relations were returned to normal in February 2018 after a memorandum of understanding was signed.[44]

 Comoros See Comoros–Qatar relations

On 7 June 2017, Comoros cut ties with Qatar, following the lead of several other countries led by a quartet composed of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.[45] After Comoros severed ties, local media reported that two local Qatari charities suspended their activities in the country and that the $37 million under-construction hospital in Anjouan was put on hold. It was speculated that the cessation of philanthropic activities by Qatar was a retaliatory measure against Comoros' alignment with the Saudi-led quartet.[46] Qatar also expelled Comoran representatives in the country on 19 June, giving them 48 hours to leave the country.[47]

 Cote D'Ivoire 1994

Both nations developed bilateral ties in 1994.[41] In December 2017, during a visit to Abidjan by Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Qatar pledged a $6 million donation for Cote D'Ivoire's development.[42]

 Djibouti

The Qatari embassy in Djibouti City was inaugurated in December 2005, shortly after the establishment of Djibouti's embassy in Doha.[48] Qatari peacekeepers were deployed to help mediate a border dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea in June 2010. After it was reported that Djibouti had sided with the Saudi-led bloc in the 2017–18 Qatar diplomatic crisis, Qatar pulled its peacekeepers from the area.[49]

 Egypt 1972 See Egypt–Qatar relations

Bilateral relations first began with Egypt in 1972.[50] In recent years, relations have been tense. Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Emir of the State of Qatar, has described the 2013 political transition in Egypt as a "military coup".[51] The main issue between the two governments is the Qatari support to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.[51]

The Egyptian government, along with those of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates, broke off diplomatic relations with Qatar on 5 June 2017. The Egyptian Foreign Ministry announced it was closing its air and sea ports to Qatari transportation. One of the driving forces behind this decision was, according to the Egyptian's government, Qatar's continuing support for "terrorism", such as the Muslim Brotherhood.[52]

 Eritrea

Qatari peacekeepers were deployed to help mediate a border dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea in June 2010.[49] During the Qatar diplomatic crisis, Eritrea was asked to sever ties with Qatar by the Saudi-led camp, but on 10 June 2017 it refused, claiming it had strong bonds with Qatar.[53] Despite this, some news outlets later reported that Eritrea did in fact cut ties, though this was denied by the Eritrean government.[54]

In March 2018, Eritrea accused Qatar and Sudan of jointly funding rebel groups in its country.[55]

 Ethiopia See Ethiopia–Qatar relations
  • Ethiopia has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Addis Ababa.
 Ghana 1982
  • Ghana has an embassy in Doha.[56]
 Kenya 2003 See Kenya–Qatar relations

Diplomatic relations started in 2003.[57]

  • Kenya has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Nairobi.
 Guinea 1988

The existence of diplomatic relations between Guinea and Qatar date back to 1988.[41]

 Liberia 2009
 Libya
  • Libya has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Tripoli.
 Mali 1977

Relations between Mali and Qatar started off in 1977.[41] In December 2017, Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani visited Mali and agreed to finance a program for the education of nearly 600,000 Malian children to the tune of $40 million.[42]

 Mauritania 1974

On 6 June, 2017, Mauritania followed the lead of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt in severing ties with Qatar. Mauritania's Foreign Ministry justified the decision by citing Qatar's alleged "support of terrorism" which has "resulted in heavy losses of human lives" throughout the region and beyond.[59] Later in the month, Mauritania announced that it would be freezing all Qatari-financed projects in Mauritania, several of which were under the auspices of Qatar Charity, as Mauritania regarded these projects as "suspicious" and believed they were linked to the aiding and abetting of regional terrorist groups.[60]

 Morocco 1972 See Morocco–Qatar relations

Qatar and Morocco formed diplomatic relations in 1972.[62]

  • Morocco has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Rabat.
 Niger

Niger has maintained an embassy in Doha since 2015. On 10 June 2017, five days after the start Qatar diplomatic crisis, Niger sided with the Saudi-led camp and recalled its ambassador from Doha.[63]

 Nigeria

There are over 7,000 Nigerian citizens in Qatar.[64]

  • Nigeria has an embassy in Doha.[65]
 Rwanda 4 May 2017

Qatar and Rwanda officially formed relations on 4 May 2017.[66]

 Senegal 10 February 1975

Qatar and Senegal formed diplomatic relations 10 February 1975.[67] Senegal sided with the Saudi-led bloc and withdrew its ambassador from Doha after the onset of the Qatar diplomatic crisis in June 2017 but recalled its ambassador in August 2017, expressing its desire for a resolution to the crisis.[68]

  • Senegal has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Dakar.
 Somalia 1970 See Somalia–Qatar relations

The two countries formally established diplomatic ties in 1970. Somalia allegedly refused Saudi Arabia's offer to join it in severing ties with Qatar in June 2017 and instead opted to stay neutral.[42]

 South Africa 10 May 1994 See Qatar–South Africa relations

Diplomatic relations between Qatar and South Africa were initiated on 10 May 1994, the same day that Nelson Mandela was sworn in as President of South Africa.[69]

 Sudan 1972 See Qatar–Sudan relations

Relations between Qatar and Sudan were first established in 1972, when Qatar inaugurated its embassy in Sudan's capital city, Khartoum.[71] Qatar remains one of the largest foreign investors in Sudan,[72] and has helped broker peace agreements between the Sudanese government and rebel factions in Darfur.[73]

 Swaziland 2002

Both countries agreed to form diplomatic relations in 2002.[74]

  • Swaziland has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Mbabane.
 Tanzania 13 December 1982

Bilateral relations between the two countries date back to 13 December 1982.[75]

  • Tanzania has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Dar es Salaam.
 Tunisia See Qatar–Tunisia relations

Qatar is among the largest Arab investors in Tunisia.[76] Relations between Qatar and Tunisia improved immensely between 2011 and 2013, when Ennahda Movement-affiliated candidate Hamadi Jebali was declared Prime Minister of Tunisia in the 2011 Tunisian Constituent Assembly elections. Cooperation in all fields gradually started picking up traction; for instance, the two governments signed ten bilateral agreements in 2012.[77]

Americas[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
 Argentina 15 June 1974

Argentina and Qatar's relations date back to 15 June 1974 when they signed joint agreement in New York.[78]

  • Argentina has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Buenos Aires.
 Barbados 5 December 2007

Barbados and Qatar agreed to formalize relations on 5 December, 2007 during a meeting in New York.[79]

 Brazil 5 November 1974 See Brazil–Qatar relations

Both countries formally established bilateral relations on 5 November 1974 – three years after Qatar gained its sovereignty.[80]

  • Brazil has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Brasília.
 Canada See Canada–Qatar relations
 Costa Rica January 2010

Bilateral relations began after then-Emir Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani visited Costa Rica from January 24 to January 25, 2010.[83]

  • Costa Rica has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in San José.
 Cuba 1989

Formal ties between Cuba and Qatar were established in 1989.[84]

 Dominican Republic 2000

In 2000, an agreement was signed between the Dominican Republic and Qatar to commence diplomatic relations.[86]

  • The Dominican Republic has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Santo Domingo.
 Ecuador
  • Ecuador has an embassy in Doha.[87]
  • Qatar has an embassy in Quito.[88]
 El Salvador 24 September 2003

Relations began on 24 September 2003.[89]

  • El Salvador has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in San Salvador.
 Guyana 23 August 1996

Diplomatic relations commenced on 23 August 1996.[90] They are both members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.[91]

 Mexico 30 June 1975 See Mexico–Qatar relations
 Paraguay
 Peru 1989

At an official level, both countries began diplomatic relations in 1989.[95]

  • Peru has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Lima.
 St. Kitts and Nevis 16 August 2017

Both countries forged diplomatic relations on 16 August 2017 in a ceremony held in New York.[96]

 United States 19 March 1972 See Qatar–United States relations

The United States formed diplomatic relations with Qatar on 19 March 1972, when diplomat William Stoltzfus met with Qatari government officials and submitted his credentials.[97]

 Uruguay 16 March 1987

On 16 March 1987, the two countries officially inaugurated diplomatic relations.[100]

  • Qatar has an embassy in Montevideo.
  • Uruguay has an embassy in Doha.

Asia[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
 Afghanistan

During the waning years of Operation Enduring Freedom in 2010 the United States and the Taliban initiated exploratory talks in regards to ending the conflict in Afghanistan after the latter announced its intention to open an office in Doha. Though they were halted later amid Taliban accusations of malfeasance by the United States,[101] president Hamid Karzai claimed the two parties held daily talks in Qatar, although the U.S.and the Taliban denied it.[102]

In December 2011, Afghanistan recalled their envoy from Qatar in protest of the newly opened Taliban office. An Afghan government official later claimed that Qatar had not consulted with them prior to the inauguration of the office.[103]

 Armenia 5 November 1997

Both countries established diplomatic relations on 5 November 1997. Approximately 5,500 Armenians live in Qatar, mostly in the capital Doha.

 Azerbaijan 14 September 1994

Azerbaijan and Qatar signed an agreement to start diplomatic relations on 14 September 1994.[104]

  • Azerbaijan has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Baku.
 Bahrain Dipolmatic ties ended on 5 June 2017 See Bahrain-Qatar relations

Both had a dispute over ownership of the Hawar Islands and the maritime boundary which was solved by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague in 2001.[105] On 5 March 2014, Bahrain withdrew its ambassadors from Qatar to protest Qatar's non-compliance with a November 2013 agreement not to "interfere" in countries' internal affairs.[106] The widely accepted cause for this move was Qatar’s support for the organization, the Muslim Brotherhood.[107] On 5 June 2017, Bahrain, along with Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, announced that it would cut ties with Qatar.[108]

 Bangladesh 25 January 1978 See Bangladesh–Qatar relations

On 25 January 1978, an agreement on the commencement of diplomatic relations was signed.[109] Approximately 123,000 Bangladeshi expatriates were working in Qatar in 2015, mainly in the construction sector.[110] In June 2017, Bangladesh signed an agreement with Qatari company RasGas to receive 2.5 million tonnes of LNG annually for the following 15 years.[111]

 Brunei 2 October 1991 See Brunei–Qatar relations

Relations between the two countries were established on 2 October 1991.[112]

 China July 1988 See China–Qatar relations

China and Qatar formed relations in July 1988.[113] Emir Tamim bin Hamad made his first visit to China in November 2014. While there, he signed a number of accords with the Chinese leader Xi Jinping, one of which entailed the formation of a China-Qatar Strategic Partnership.[114]

  • China has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Beijing and a consulate-general in Guangzhou.
 Georgia 16 March 1993

Both countries formed diplomatic relations on 16 March 1993.[115]

  • Georgia has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Tbilisi.
 India 1973 See India–Qatar relations
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Emir Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani in Doha, June 2016

India and Qatar began bilateral relations in 1973.[116] Both countries signed a maritime defence agreement and an information-sharing agreement in November 2008.[117] As part of these agreements, the inaugural India-Qatar Joint Committee on Defence Co-operation meeting was hosted in the Qatari capital Doha in 2008.[118]

 Indonesia 1976 See Indonesia–Qatar relations

Indonesia and Qatar established bilateral relations in 1976.[122] The two countries have signed a number of memorandums of understanding in the fields of air transport, tourism, and agriculture.[123]

  • Indonesia has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Jakarta.
 Iran October 1971 See Iran–Qatar relations

Qatar and Iran signed an agreement on setting up diplomatic relations in October 1971, only one month after Qatar gained its independence.[124] The two countries have close ties. Both are members of OPEC, the Non-Aligned Movement, and the Organization of the Islamic Conference. Unlike fellow GCC member states Saudi Arabia and the UAE, Qatar generally refrains from criticizing Iran’s domestic and foreign activities. Qatar has also held several high-level meetings with Iranian officials to discuss security and economic agreements.[125] They jointly control the world’s largest gas field.[126] In addition to ties in the oil and natural gas arena, Iran and Qatar also cooperate in the shipping sector.[125]

In January 2016, as a result of the attack on the Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran by Iranian protesters, Qatar recalled its ambassador to Tehran and denounced the attack.[127] On 23 August 2017, Qatar announced it would return its ambassador to Iran.[128]

 Iraq

Following the 1990–91 Gulf War, in which Qatar and Iraq were on opposing sides, Qatar closed their embassy in Baghdad. Relations gradually improved between the two countries in the late 1990s.[129] Qatar reopened its embassy for the first time twenty-five years in mid-2015,[130] and in September 2015, appointed its ambassador to Iraq.[131]

 Israel See Israel–Qatar relations

Qatar established trade relations with the State of Israel in 1996.[132] Despite Qatar's support of Hamas and its cordial relations with Hezbollah, Israeli leaders have maintained direct contact with the emirate. In January 2007, in his last months as vice premier, Shimon Peres paid a high-profile visit to the capital city of Doha.[133] Peres also visited Qatar in 1996, when he launched the new Israeli trade bureau there.[134] The bureau was closed in February 2009.[135]

In 2010, Qatar twice offered to restore trade relations with Israel and allow the reinstatement of the Israeli mission in Doha, on condition that Israel allow Qatar send materials and money to Gaza for its infrastructure, and that Israel make a public statement expressing appreciation for Qatar's efforts. Israel refused on the grounds that Qatari materials could be used by Hamas against Israel, and that Israel did not want to get involved in the competition between Qatar and Egypt over mediation.[136][137]

 Japan 1972 See Japan–Qatar relations

Diplomatic relations between Qatar and Japan were established in 1972. The two countries share strong economic ties, with Japan being Qatar's foremost trading partner, and Qatar ranking as Japan's sixth most significant import partner in 2016. Japan has an embassy in Doha.[138][139][140][141]

 Jordan 1972 See Jordan–Qatar relations

Qatar and Jordan had turbulent relations since the 2000s. Authorities in Qatar arrested and tried a Jordanian journalist working for Qatar TV named Firas Majali on charges of espionage in February 2002 and in August 2002, Jordan closed Al Jazeera's Amman bureau over a segment deemed insulting towards its ruling family.[142] Additionally, Jordan recalled its ambassador to Doha that month. A Qatari court sentenced Firas Majali to death in October 2002,[143] but in March 2003, the Qatari emir granted Majali a pardon after meeting with King Abdullah II of Jordan.[144] This prompted Jordan to reinstate Al Jazeera's Amman bureau that year.[145]

On June 6, 2017, one day after the beginning of the 2017 Qatari diplomatic crisis, Jordan announced that it would be cutting back ties with Qatar in solidarity with the blockading countries as well as shuttering the Al Jazeera bureau based there.[146]

 Kazakhstan July 1993 See Kazakhstan–Qatar relations

Kazakhstan and Qatar signed an official agreement formalizing diplomatic relations in July of 1993.[147]

  • Kazakhstan has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Astana.
 Kuwait See Kuwait–Qatar relations

In 1990, at the beginning of the Gulf War, Qatar was among the Arab countries to condemn Iraq's occupation of Kuwait. It also pledged military support to Kuwait.[129] Qatari soldiers participated in the Battle of Khafji, the first major ground engagement in the Gulf War.[148]

Amir Sabah Al-Sabah was recognized as chief mediator of the 2017 Qatari diplomatic crisis. Kuwait's neutrality and good relations with both parties were the main reasons behind its status as mediator.[149]

 Kyrgyzstan 3 March 1998

Officially, diplomatic relations between the two countries started on 3 March 1998.[150]

  • Kyrgyzstan has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Bishkek.
 Laos 3 February 2005

Diplomatic exchange between Qatar and Laos commenced on 3 February 2005.[151]

 Lebanon

Qatar mediated negotiations between leading Lebanese political parties in 2008 during the backdrop of the 2006–08 Lebanese protests.[152] The Doha Agreement was signed by all parties in May after five days of negotiations, resolving the crisis.[153]

In 2010, the Qatari emir became the first Arab leader to tour South Lebanon and view the various projects it funded following the 2006 Lebanon War.[154] Qatar contributed $3mn in funding to the restoration of Lebanon following the war, and financed the reconstruction of over 12,000 residential units and a number of buildings in 195 villages in southern Lebanon.[155] The emir visited a hospital in Bint Jbeil and a nearby mosque and church which he funded the reconstruction of, while being accompanied by Lebanon's President Michel Sleiman and Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri.[154]

 Malaysia 1974 See Malaysia–Qatar relations

The two countries formalized diplomatic relations in 1974.[156]

 Maldives 26 May 1984 (Dipolmatic ties ended on 5 June 2017)

The two countries initiated relations on 26 May 1984.[159] On 5 June, 2017, in solidarity with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, Maldives decided to sever ties with Qatar.[160]

 Myanmar 26 December 2005

Both countries have had diplomatic relations since 26 December 2005.[161]

  • Qatar has an embassy in Yangon.
 Mongolia 21 January 1998

The inception of Monglia–Qatar relations date back to 21 January 1998.[162] Qatar donated $10 million to Mongolia for its Millennium Road Project in 2006.[163]

   Nepal 21 January 1977

Diplomatic relations were inaugurated on 21 January 1977.[164] The Nepali ambassador to Qatar, Maya Kumari Sharma, described the emirate as an "open jail" in reference to the working conditions of migrant Nepali laborers.[165]

 North Korea 11 January 1993

Qatar and North Korea formed diplomatic links on 11 January 1993.[168]

 Oman 1970 See Oman–Qatar relations

Formal diplomatic relations date back to 1970.[169] Oman helped facilitate shipping to Qatar after several Arab countries cut sea routes to Qatar during the 2017 Qatar diplomatic crisis. Following the onset of the crisis in June 2017, most Qatari-destined goods flowed through the Port of Salalah and Sohar Port.[170] Two direct shipping lines between the aforementioned ports and Qatar's Hamad Port were launched the same month.[171] When Qatar Airways was banned from Saudi airspace, Oman stepped in and transported Saudi-based Qataris back to Doha.[172] At the official level, Oman remained uninvolved in the dispute, but its status as an alternative transit route has helped Qatar bypass the blockade imposed by its neighbors.[172]

 Pakistan 1972 See Pakistan–Qatar relations

Formal diplomatic ties were formed in 1972.[173]

  • Pakistan has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Islamabad and a consulate-general in Karachi.
 Palestine
  • Palestine has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has a representative office in Gaza City.
 Philippines 5 May 1981 See Philippines–Qatar relations

The Philippines and Qatar established diplomatic relations on 5 May 1981.[174] As of 2014, about 200,000 Filipinos live in Qatar.[175]

 Saudi Arabia Dipolmatic ties ended on 5 June 2017 See Saudi Arabia-Qatar relations and Qatar–Saudi Arabia proxy conflict

In September 1992, tensions arose between Qatar and Saudi Arabia when Saudi forces allegedly attacked a Qatari border post, resulting in the death of two Qatari soldiers and the imprisonment of a third.[176]

Saudi Arabia withdrew its ambassador from Doha due to some reservations over Al Jazeera content in 2002.[177] It was not until 2008 that Saudi Arabia reinstated its ambassador to Qatar.[178] On 5 March 2014, Saudi Arabia once again withdrew its ambassador from Qatar, this time to protest Qatar's non-compliance with a November 2013 agreement not to "interfere" in countries' internal affairs.[106] The widely accepted cause for this move was Qatar’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood.[107]

On 5 June 2017, Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic relations with Qatar.[179] The move was followed by a number of other countries in the region and beyond.

 Singapore 1984

Diplomatic ties between the two were created in 1984.[180]

 South Korea April 1974

Qatar and South Korea established diplomatic relations in 1974.[183] On 8 March 2015, Qatari foreign minister Khalid bin Mohammad Al Attiyah and his South Korean counterpart, Yun Byung-se signed a memorandum of understanding entailing joint diplomatic training between the Diplomatic Institute of Qatar and the Korea National Diplomatic Academy. Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and South Korean president Park Geun-hye attended the signing ceremony held in Doha.[184]

  • South Korea has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Seoul.
 Syria

During the Syrian Civil War, Qatar, along with Saudi Arabia, Turkey and western states, vocally and materially supported different rebels with arms and funds against the government. Qatar has been the biggest sponsor of Syrian opposition forces during the civil war.[185][186]

 Thailand 1980 See Qatar–Thailand relations

Qatar and Thailand formed relations in 1980.[187] Their cooperation mainly revolves around tourism and energy.[188]

 Turkey 1973 See Qatar–Turkey relations

The history of bilateral relations between Qatar and Turkey dates back to the 1973.[189] In the 1980s, the two nations began signing bilateral agreements with one another. Relations gained further traction in the 2000s with the signing of a further number of bilateral agreements.[190]

Qatar and Turkey share similar positions on the Syrian Civil War and the Egyptian Crisis.[191] Their coordination in regional politics has been described as an alliance.[192]

On 2 December 2015, during a Turkish presidential visit to Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad and Tayyip Erdoğan announced the planned creation of a Turkish military base in Qatar; a first for Turkey in the Persian Gulf.[193]

 Turkmenistan 22 November 1996

Both countries released a joint communiqué on 22 November 1996 formally declaring the beginning of diplomatic relations.[194]

 United Arab Emirates Dipolmatic ties ended on 5 June 2017 See Qatar–United Arab Emirates relations

In 1995, after Hamad bin Khalifa deposed his father to become emir of Qatar, UAE granted asylum to the deposed Khalifa bin Hamad. Qatar accused UAE, along with Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, of plotting against the new emir, to which the accused countries denied all charges. Several hundred arrests were made in relation to the incident throughout the next two years, and in February 1996, the Qatar Amiri Guard was mobilised.[195]

UAE was one of the three countries which withdrew their ambassadors from Qatar in 2014.[106] On 5 June 2017, UAE, along with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, giving the country's diplomats 48 hours to leave the country.[196] UAE was implicated in the hacking of the Qatar News Agency, which set off the diplomatic crisis.[197]

 Uzbekistan 27 November 1997

In a meeting in Ankara on 27 November 1997, Qatar and Uzbekistan released a joint statement formally declaring the commencement of diplomatic relations.[198]

 Vietnam 8 February 1993 See Qatar–Vietnam relations

Qatar and Vietnam formed ties on 8 February 1993.[199]

  • Vietnam has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Hanoi.

Europe[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
 Albania 28 August 1992

Albania and Qatar officially commenced diplomatic relations on 28 August 1992.[200]

  • Albania has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Tirana.
 Andorra 15 May 2007

Diplomatic relations were established between Andorra and Qatar on 15 May 2007.[201]

 Austria
 Belarus 16 February 1996

On 16 February 1996, the two countries signed an agreement on forming diplomatic relations.[203]

  • Belarus has an embassy in Doha.
 Belgium
 Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina has an embassy in Doha.[206]
  • Qatar has an embassy in Sarajevo.[207]
 Bulgaria 16 October 1990

Both countries agreed to begin diplomatic relations on 16 October 1990.[208]

  • Bulgaria has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Sofia.
 Croatia 12 May 1992

Bilateral relations were established on 12 May 1992.[209]

  • Croatia has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Zagreb.
 Cyprus See Cyprus–Qatar relations
  • Cyprus has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Nicosia.
 France See France–Qatar relations

France maintains an embassy in Doha,[210] while Qatar maintains an embassy in Paris.[211] The first bilateral agreement was signed in 1974.[212] Qatar is an associate member of the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie.[213] Both countries share strong economic and military ties. France and Qatar signed a defense pact since 1994,[214] and a significant portion of Qatar's military equipment is imported from France.[215]

In 2012, Qatar became France's seventh largest customer and sixth largest supplier in the Near East. Exports from France focus mainly on the supply of capital goods, deliveries of Airbus aircraft, and trade.[216] Qatar's sovereign wealth fund holds stakes in Vivendi, Lagardère Group,[217] and Vinci SA.[218]

 Germany 1973 See Germany–Qatar relations
Qatari embassy in Berlin

Qatar has had an embassy in Berlin since 2005,[219] and Germany has an embassy in Doha.[220] Bilateral ties were formed in 1973.[221] In regards to economic relations, Qatar has made large-scale investments in some of Germany's most prominent companies, including Volkswagen, Siemens and Deutsche Bank.[222]

On 6 June 2017, German FM Sigmar Gabriel condemned the Saudi-led boycott of Qatar.[223] In July, he called on the blockading countries to respect Qatar's rights as a sovereign nation, and applauded its prudence in responding to the blockade.[224]

 Greece 1973 See Greece–Qatar relations

Greece and Qatar officially formed relations in 1973.

  • Greece has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Athens.
 Hungary 1990

Diplomatic relations between the two countries started in 1990.[225]

  • Hungary has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Budapest.
 Italy See Italy–Qatar relations
  • Italy has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Rome and a consulate-general in Milan.
 Kosovo 7 January 2011

The Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced to Kosovan government officials that it would be recognizing the country's sovereignty on 4 January 2011, being the 73rd country to do so.[226] Diplomatic relations between the two were formalized on 7 January 2011.[227]

 Lithuania 25 November 1992

Relations between Lithuania and Qatar started on 25 November 1992.[228]

 Malta
 Moldova 1997

Formal diplomatic relations date back to 1997.[230]

  • Moldova has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Chisnau.
 Netherlands
 Poland September 1998

Poland and Qatar began diplomatic relations in September 1998.[232]

  • Poland has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Warsaw.
 Portugal
  • Portugal has an embassy in Doha.[233]
 Republic of Macedonia 25 June 1996

Both countries initialized relations on 25 June 1996 in a public ceremony held in New York.[234]

  • Qatar has an embassy in Skopje.
  • The Republic of Macedonia has an embassy in Doha.
 Romania 22 October 1990

Ties between Qatar and Romania were established on 22 October 1990.[235]

  • Qatar has an embassy in Bucharest.
  • Romania has an embassy in Doha.
 Russia 1988 See Qatar–Russia relations
Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Moscow, January 2016

Qatar–Russia relations started in 1988 during the Soviet Union era.[236]

  • Qatar has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Doha.
 Serbia 1989

In 1989, both countries penned an agreement formalizing diplomatic relations.[237]

  • Qatar has an embassy in Belgrade.
  • Serbia has an embassy in Doha.
 Spain December 1972 See Qatar–Spain relations
  • Qatar has an embassy in Madrid.
  • Spain has an embassy in Doha.
 Sweden See Qatar–Sweden relations
  • Qatar has an embassy in Stockholm.
  • Sweden has an embassy in Doha.
  Switzerland 1973

Diplomatic relations between Qatar and Switzerland first got underway in 1973.[238]

  • Qatar has an embassy in Bern and a consulate-general in Geneva.
  • Switzerland has an embassy in Doha.
 United Kingdom See Qatar–United Kingdom relations
  • Qatar has an embassy in London.
  • United Kingdom has an embassy in Doha.

Oceania[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
 Australia See Australia–Qatar relations
  • Australia has an embassy in Doha.
  • Qatar has an embassy in Canberra.
 Fiji 20 October 2010

Qatar and Fiji officially formed diplomatic relations on 20 October 2010 in a public ceremony held in New York.[239] In a 2014 incident where 45 Fijian peacekeepers were kidnapped and confined for two weeks in Syria by militants with connections to Al Qaeda, Qatar's government claimed responsibility for successfully negotiating the safe release of the peacekeepers.[240] It was reported in April 2017 that Fijian officials met with the Qatari government to discuss the possibility of turning the emirate into a refuge for Fijian peacekeepers in emergency situations.[241]

 Kiribati 29 March 2016

On 29 March 2016, both countries agreed to establish diplomatic relations during a ceremony in New York.[242]

 New Zealand
  • New Zealand is accredited to Qatar from its embassy in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
  • Qatar is accredited to New Zealand from its embassy in Canberra, Australia
 Papua New Guinea 24 February 2017

Qatar formed ties with Papua New Guinea on 24 February 2017, at the Qatari Permanent Mission to the U.N. in New York.[243]

 Samoa 9 March 2011

Diplomatic relations between Qatar and Samoa commenced on 9 March 2011.[244]

 Vanuatu 16 September 2002

The two countries established bilateral relations on 16 September 2002.[245]

See also[edit]

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