Country Reports on Terrorism 2008 - Qatar

While counterterrorism cooperation between Qatar and the United States remained positive, the United States continued to strive for increased cooperation with the Qatari government on information sharing.

There has not been a terrorist attack in Qatar since the March 19, 2005, suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device attack at an amateur theater playhouse that killed a British citizen. Cooperation with U.S. law enforcement authorities continued to improve during and after the course of the investigation of this case. Press reports indicated that up to 19 people of various nationalities, including one Qatari, were apprehended during the ensuing investigation. There were no reports of criminal prosecution in the case; however, many of the third country nationals who were apprehended were deported subsequent to the investigation.

The Qatar Authority for Charitable Activities is responsible for overseeing all domestic and international charitable activities, including approving international fund transfers by charities and monitoring overseas charitable, development, and humanitarian projects. The Authority reports annually to Qatari government ministries on the status of their oversight and humanitarian activities.

Cooperation with U.S. authorities on counterterrorist finance continued to develop. Qatar's Financial Information Unit (FIU) resides in the Qatar Central Bank. Local banks worked with the Central Bank and the FIU on counterterrorist finance and anti-money laundering issues, and bank officials attended U.S.-sponsored conferences.

Qatar was one of two countries in the Gulf with an Attorney General independent of the Ministry of Interior or Ministry of Justice, and equivalent to a ministerial level position. The Attorney General independently controlled and oversaw public prosecutions and appointed attorneys within the Public Prosecutors Office.

The USG has provided law enforcement and counterterrorism training under various programs, including the Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA) program. The Ministry of Interior and State Security each had an officer graduate from the FBI National Academy in 2008. In addition, the FBI provided counterterrorism and investigative training to larger groups both in Qatar and the United States. The exchanges and training have had a positive effect in maintaining a good relationship with Qatari law enforcement agencies and increasing their ability to deter, disrupt, and defeat terrorist activity in Qatar. Operationally, however, this capability has yet to be fully tried, tested, or proven.


This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.