Louvre museum denies Qatar claims of investigation in map row

The Louvre museum in Paris has categorically denied launching an investigation into how Qatar came to be left off a map of the Gulf region at its sister museum in Abu Dhabi. (AFP)
Updated 07 February 2018
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Louvre museum denies Qatar claims of investigation in map row

LONDON: The Louvre museum in Paris has categorically denied launching an investigation into how Qatar came to be left off a map of the Gulf region at its sister museum in Abu Dhabi.
Ali bin Samikh Al-Marri, chairman of Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee, claimed officials from the Paris museum’s management were investigating the omission at the Louvre Abu Dhabi because they were concerned about the “political exploitation” of art and culture and potential damage to the integrity of the Louvre.
But while a spokesman for the world-famous museum confirmed Al-Marri had visited the Louvre in Paris along with the Qatari ambassador, there was no truth in the assertion that any investigation had been opened.
“The Musee du Louvre formally denies having opened an investigation,” said a statement from the Paris museum sent to Arab News.
The visit by the ambassador Khalid bin Rashid Al-Mansouri and Al-Marri on Feb. 5 was arranged at the request of the Qatari embassy in Paris.
The statement went on: “The question of a map in the Louvre Abu Dhabi children’s museum, on which Qatar did not appear was discussed. During this meeting, representatives of the Louvre reiterated the fact this was a simple technical incident, attributable to a subcontractor who worked in urgency, only a few days before the opening. It was an involuntary negligence and in no way intentional.
“The Louvre also reminded its Qatari interlocutors that this was the only map, among numerous others on display at the Louvre Abu Dhabi, on which Qatar did not appear.
“Working closely with the Louvre Abu Dhabi teams, the map was changed immediately, 15 days ago, as soon as the incident was discovered.”
Al-Marri made his claims to Al-Sharq, a pro-government daily newspaper published in Doha, in which he accused the UAE of seeking to “exploit culture and put it into political conflicts.”


Kurdish party behind referendum wins regional polls in Iraq

Updated 7 min 3 sec ago
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Kurdish party behind referendum wins regional polls in Iraq

  • The elections commission says the Kurdistan Democratic Party won 45 seats out of 111 seats
BAGHDAD: The Iraqi Kurdish party behind last year’s ill-fated independence referendum has won the most seats in parliamentary elections held in the autonomous Kurdish region, authorities said Sunday.
The elections commission says the Kurdistan Democratic Party won 45 seats, 12 short of an outright majority in the 111-seat body.
Kurdish voters endorsed independence in a referendum last year that was marked by low turnout. Iraq’s central government refused to accept the results, and responded by seizing control of the mixed, multi-ethnic oil-city of Kirkuk and other territories.
The elections commission announced the results of the September 30 vote on Sunday.
The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan came in second, with 21 seats.
The Gorran party came in third. It accused the PUK and KDP of vote-rigging and fraud.