EOHR’s memorandum on Qatari violations of International Human Rights law

September 20th, 2018 by Editor

EOHR’s memorandum on Qatari violations of International Human Rights law

The Ghofran tribe has been subjected to a series of horrendous violations by the Qatari State. A number of fundamental rights and international human rights instruments have been blatantly violated by the Qatari authorities contradicting their international obligations and moral responsibitly as a state. The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) decided to adopt the case of Al Ghofran to publicize their just case and help them in reclaiming their stolen rights. EOHR in this report lists a number of the major violations of international human rights law that the Qatari state has committed against thousands of members of Al Ghofran tribe.

Right to nationality:

Article 15 of the Universal declaration of human rights (UDHR) states:

(1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.

(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.

The UDHR is one of the most important human rights documents and is the founding element of international human rights law. UDHR is morally binding to all states including Qatar. The Qatari government since 1996 has exercised a form of collective punishment against Al Ghofran tribe due to the support some of its members have voiced to Emir Khalifa Al Thani when his son and successor Hammad bin Khalifa toppled him from the throne. The collective punishment entailed the revoking of the nationalities of 800 Ghofrani nuclear families (more than 6000 people). All of them were denied citizenship rights and their properties were confiscated. Such a form of arbitrary deprivation from nationality and citizenship rights cannot go unchecked as thousands of Ghofranis remain stateless within Qatar and in neighbouring states in the Gulf area.

Forced displacement:

Forced deportation or displacement of populations on a wide scale is considered a crime against humanity under article 7 of the Rome Statute. The Qatari state since 1996 has stripped the nationalities of at least 6000 Ghofranis and expelled them from the country after confiscating their property. Expelling 6000 Ghofranis out of around 8000 in Qatar can only be deemed as an act of systematic forced displacement. EOHR considers these policies as criminal actions that making the culprits eligible for legal accountability.

Violations of the Convention on the rights of the child

Article 8 of the Convention reads:

  1. States Parties undertake to respect the right of the child to preserve his or her identity, including nationality, name and family relations as recognized by law without unlawful interference.
  2. Where a child is illegally deprived of some or all of the elements of his or her identity, States Parties shall provide appropriate assistance and protection, with a view to re-establishing speedily his or her identity.

The state of Qatar who happens to be party to the convention has deprived thousands of Ghofrnai children from the rights to identity and nationality stipulated by article 8. Qatar’s revoking of the nationalities of Ghofrani children is a violation of their treaty obligation and his has to be reported and documented by Committee of the Convention so that action can be taken.

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