Qatari regime's foolish acts against pilgrims must stop: Commentators

Qatari pilgrims
Qatari pilgrims

Mostapha Hassan

Citing the arrest and prosecution of some Qatari pilgrims, commentators say it seems the Qatari regime, led by Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani has gone nuts.

Those pilgrims are punished as they responded to the initiative launched by Sheikh Abdullah al-Thani. They went to Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj at the expense of the Saudi king Salman bin Abdel-Aziz, who ordered facilitating all measures for them for a smooth pilgrimage trip. 

According to some reports, authorities in Doha kept tabs on some pilgrims who returned home from Hajj. The reports say some of them have been detained and others tortured.

The Qatari pilgrims have also been interrogated by the irrational regime, commentators said, citing the reports.

Rights groups and watchdogs have expressed deep concerns about these reports. They said the Qatari acts defy all the international norms and charters on human rights. 

List of pilgrims

The Saudi Arabia-based National Association for Human Rights said it will hand over a list containing names of Qatari pilgrims who performed pilgrimage this season. 

The watchdog condemned assaulting the pilgrim Ahmed al-Merri, who was assaulted on his way home. It asserted the necessity of ensuring al-Merri's safety, calling on international organizations to move to protect him from the abuses he may face at home.

 It yet called for all institutions in Qatar to work to hunt those filmed him after he entered Qatar. "Al-Merri should be reunited with his family, protected against any abuses, and given freedoms of expression and movement as set out in the international treaties and conventions on human rights.

Qatari crime

The Saudi rights organization went on to say al-Merri was attacked as he appeared on a Saudi state-run channel, defying the commands of the ruler of Qatar.

In a statement, the organization called on the Qatari regime to reveal the identity of those attacked al-Merri.

This pilgrim should be recompensed, it stated.

According to reports, staffers of the Saudi watchdog visited the Qatari pilgrims in their residences and ensured that they enjoy their rights. 

Also, head of the Saudi watchdog Miflih al-Qahtani called in his peers in Qatar to maintain the safety of al-Merri.

"We have deep concerns that he may be punished for lauding the Saudi efforts during this Hajj season. He appeared on a Saudi media outlet, and this could be of grave consequences for him, al-Qahtani added. 

Gulf Association for Rights & Freedoms called on the international community to take deterrent measures against Qatar and move to protect pilgrims.

It also stressed the importance of Qatar's respect for a fundamental right, namely, the freedom of practicing religious rituals by performing Hajj for citizens and residents.

"The authorities in Qatar are trying to politicize Hajj," the Association added, noting Doha failed miserably to do so. 

Qatari authorities are responsible for ensuring the safety of the pilgrims who performed rituals this year, the Association stated, reiterating Doha is seeking to deepen divisions, violate human rights and support terror in the region.

On their part, commentators strongly denounced what Qatar has been doing since the start of pilgrimage season.

This is disgraceful. Have those people lost their minds? One of them exclaimed as he spoke to The Baghdad Post.

There is no sane person who could accept such behaviors, another commentator said. 'Such foolish acts should be ground to a halt." 

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