Qatar’s first permanent representative to the UN recalls Qatar’s diplomatic role over past 50 years

DOHA: Ambassador Jassim bin Yousef Al-Jamal, Qatar’s first permanent representative to the UN, has given an overview of Qatar’s international role over the past five decades in an interview with Qatar News Agency.

Al-Jamal was appointed soon after Qatar’s independence in 1971 and served for 12 years. 

In his interview, Al-Jamal emphasized that despite its recent independence, Qatar had played a strong and active role in the UN, and its permanent delegation was in harmony with the Arab group.

He said that as an active and influential presence on the global diplomatic scene, Qatar played an important role in defending its national interests as well as actively contributing to issues of international peace and security.

Al-Jamal recalled some of the memorable moments reinforcing this, such as when the Palestine Liberation Organization submitted to the UN General Assembly a draft resolution condemning Zionism as a racist movement, which had angered the West at a time when Zionism wielded great influence in the international organization.

When the draft resolution was put to a vote, it received 72 votes, including from influential Latin American countries such as Mexico and Argentina. This strong and united position was a blow to Israel and its supporters, and echoed strongly in the corridors of the international organization, Europe, the US, and within Israel itself, Al-Jamal said.

The ambassador praised Islamic countries’ support of Arab issues, particularly the Palestinian cause, which Qatar has always backed. 

Asked about Qatar hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup, Al-Jamal said that holding this important global sporting event for the first time in Middle Eastern history will boost Qatar’s status and importance. 

Al-Jamal said that the world’s attention is now focused on Qatar, demonstrating its ability to host such major sports tournaments with efficiency and distinction. He expressed his confidence that the Arab countries will stand by Qatar and support its success in hosting this international sporting event. 

Concerning the UN’s attempt to reform the UN Security Council, Al-Jamal said that developing countries have always advocated for the expansion of the Security Council, but he cautioned that achieving this goal requires changing the United Nations Charter.

The ambassador said that the chances of this happening now are “almost impossible” because the great powers have the right of veto and will not allow it because they always put their interests first.

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