The Global Financial System and International Business Community Must Reject Qatar and its Sponsorship of Hamas Leadership / The Era of Qatari Whitewashing is Over
(New York, N.Y.) — Today, Counter Extremism Project (CEP) Chief Executive Officer Ambassador Mark D. Wallace and CEP President Frances F. Townsend announced a global campaign for a Qatar asset freeze following the massacre by Hamas in Israel directed by Hamas leadership based in Doha, Qatar.
Qatar and the Al Thani Royal Family have hosted, platformed, and championed Hamas leadership for many years. Ismail Haniyeh, the chairman of Hamas’ Political Bureau and a U.S. designated Specially Designated Global Terrorist (“SDGT”), his predecessor Khaled Meshaal, also an SDGT, and other Hamas leadership all lead luxuriantly appointed lifestyles in five-star accommodation in Doha, Qatar. Since at least 2018, Qatar has also financed Hamas to the tune of between $360 million and $480 million annually, including through government-controlled charitable front organizations. Ali al-Qaradaghi, residing in Qatar, is the highest religious authority of Hamas, providing the organization with an alleged pretext (in the form of Fatwa) for their terror acts. He replaced the late Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a long-time resident of Qatar who encouraged and advocated all their atrocities and provided religious sanction to suicide attacks in the past.
Following the brutal atrocities committed by Hamas in southern Israel on October 7, Haniyeh watched the attacks unfold from his office in Qatar. On the same day, he issued a video address urging the world to join in the orgy of violence against the Jewish state and nation. The address was aired on the Qatar and Al Thani-owned and controlled Al Jazeera network.
CEP has already demanded that Qatar and the Al Thani royal family immediately detain Haniyeh and other Doha-based Hamas leadership and arrange for their immediate transfer to U.S. and/or Israeli custody. Even as Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited Qatar on October 13, Qatar has refused all such entreaties.
On Saturday, October 14, Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian also met with Haniyeh and other Hamas leaders in Qatar. Abdollahian was pictured kissing Haniyeh while Qatari operatives watched in the background.
Qatar has extensive financial holdings across the U.S., U.K., and Europe: in real estate, energy companies, aviation, and sports franchises. All Qatari-owned U.S., U.K., and European assets must be frozen. No monies earned or paid to such assets should be repatriated to Qatar. The asset freeze should remain in place unless and until Qatar surrenders every member of Qatar-based Hamas leadership, including but not limited to Haniyeh and Meshaal, into U.S. and/or Israeli custody and facilitates the immediate return of all hostages held by Hamas.
Lee Wolosky, a widely recognized counselor, has held senior legal and national security roles for four U.S. presidents, including serving as special counsel to President Biden and U.S. special envoy for Guantanamo Closure during the Obama administration.
Gary Osen has litigated complex international cases, including serving as lead trial counsel in the landmark Linde v. Arab Bank, Plc case, which resulted in the first jury verdict against a financial institution under the Anti-Terrorism Act.
The Qatar Asset Freeze Coalition will work with CEP to identify Qatar assets, place relevant parties on notice of their obligations related to the freeze of assets, and prevent monetary repatriation of any sums to Qatar.
Ambassador Wallace and Former Homeland Security Advisor Townsend stated the following in support of the asset freeze campaign:
“CEP has been calling on Qatar to sever its ties with Hamas since 2017. There is no excuse for Qatar to refuse to surrender Hamas’ leadership to the U.S. and/or Israel and to close Hamas’ office and facilities in Doha. There is no excuse for Qatar to refuse to facilitate the immediate return of Hamas’ hostages. Qatar’s longstanding sponsorship of the Hamas terror group must end. Doha has used its vast hydrocarbon wealth to whitewash this support by purchasing and operating vast signature assets in the U.S., U.K., and E.U.—no more. Alongside Iran, Qatar’s role as the chief state sponsor of Hamas is over. Any persons continuing to associate and work with Qatari-owned enterprises in the U.S., U.K., and E.U. should face personal liability, sanctions, and prosecution if they facilitate asset and fund repatriation to Qatar and the Qatar Investment Authority.
“CEP’s coalition will expose this vast network of assets. We call on all parties to ensure that no funds are repatriated to Qatar so long as the Al Thanis provide a safe haven for Hamas’ leaders and Hamas continues to hold hostages from Israel, America, and other countries worldwide.”
As a first step, CEP calls on the following businesses to freeze all assets and segregate all earnings to prevent any such funds’ repatriation to Qatar:
- Paris-Saint Germain Football Club
- City Center D.C.
- Heathrow Airport Holdings
CEP expects these entities to cooperate with its efforts to cut off the flow of Qatari blood money to Hamas and to, among other things, preserve all documents, including electronic media, that reflect communications with Qatari stakeholders concerning Qatar’s support for Hamas.
CEP will specifically direct a call to all named businesses to freeze assets, segregate monies, and prevent repatriation to Qatar.
No responsible party should serve as an executive, employee, consultant, shareholder, service provider, or counterparty to a Qatari-owned business. Given Qatar’s patronage of Hamas, Qatar’s responsibility for surrendering Hamas leadership to relevant authorities and ensuring the immediate release of the hostages is absolute. Qatar’s responsibility for the suffering of thousands of victims and their loved ones is unmistakable and absolute. We will unrelentingly work toward seizing Qatar’s international assets.
To read The Wall Street Journal’s report on UANI and CEP’s call to action, please click here.
To read The Telegraph’s report citing CEP’s Chief Executive Officer Mark Wallace’s call for a Qatari asset freeze until it surrenders Hamas leadership to the U.S. and/or Israel, please click here.
To read CEP’s report, Qatar: Extremism and Terrorism, please click here.
CEP has already called on Qatar to expel Hamas leadership, but they continue to enable terrorist behavior. To read CEP’s HARBORS Campaign Report on Qatar, please click here.
To read UANI’s report Qatar an Impediment to Unity on Iran, please click here.