DUBAI: Qatari media has been upping the ante with articles and opinion pieces shedding negative light on the US-lead “Peace to Prosperity” economic workshop in Bahrain, which led to Palestinian officials to have a negative view of the summit and urge other Arab states of boycotting it.
“We call on the countries that have agreed to attend the Bahrain workshop to reevaluate their decision,” the secretary of the PLO’s executive committee, Saeb Erekat, told Arab News in an interview yesterday.
Experts predict that comments come as a result of Iranian and Qatari media propagating a negative view of the workshop, which is being falsely portrayed as an effort to force Palestinians to sell-away their right to a state.
“‘A two-day international Peace to Prosperity economic workshop in Bahrain undermines #Palestinians and their calls for sovereignty’” read a tweet from Qatar-owned English version of The New Arab, a newspaper based in London.
Another tweet by the same news website read: “In-depth: ‘Palestinian political and religious leaders have slammed Jared Kushner’s so-called Deal of the Century Israel-Palestine peace plan, due to be revealed in part in a controversial Bahrain summit‘”
In-depth - “Palestinian political and religious leaders have slammed Jared Kushner's so-called Deal of the Century #Israel-Palestine peace plan, due to be revealed in part in a controversial #Bahrain summit“ https://t.co/KsH83LFLBP— The New Arab (@The_NewArab) May 26, 2019
While a Twitter poll from senior Al Jazeera New channel anchor Jamal Rayyan asked “Do you support Saudi Arabia, UAE and Israel’s organization of an economic conference in Bahrain to finance the deal of the century and the liquidation of the Palestinian cause?”
هل تؤيد تنظيم #السعودية و #الامارات وإسرائيل مؤتمرا اقتصاديا في #البحرين لتمويل صفقة القرن وتصفية القضية الفلسطينية #الخليج #مصر #العراق #سوريا #الجزائر #قطر #الاردن #فلسطين #ليبيا #تونس #السودان #موريتانيا #اليمن #المغرب_العربي— جمال ريان (@jamalrayyan) May 23, 2019
The results showed 71 percent against while 29 percent for.
Also, articles from Middle East Eye and Middle East Monitor – both Qatari-backed and pro-Hamas and pro-Muslim Brotherhood – have exaggerated the ‘failings’ of the workshop in Manama.
"It goes beyond dumpster-fire diplomacy in implying that the Palestinian people do not have the right to freedom or self-determination, and can be persuaded to trade their dignity for dollars"https://t.co/lwAROAfXoB— Middle East Eye (@MiddleEastEye) May 25, 2019
But while Qatari media has aggressively pushed against the Bahain summit, Israel-based Haaretz has published an article claiming that Qatar plans to attend and participate in the conference, which takes place on June 25 and 26.
No reports of Qatar confirming or denying the Haaretz article were found by Arab News.
Dubbed “Peace for Prosperity,” the conference is expected to bring together leaders from several governments, civil society and the business sector.
Trump’s office said the conference was a “pivotal opportunity... to share ideas, discuss strategies, and galvanize support for potential economic investments and initiatives that could be made possible by a peace agreement.”
The Palestinians see this as offering financial rewards in exchange for accepting ongoing Israeli occupation.
“Attempts at promoting an economic normalization of the Israeli occupation of Palestine will be rejected,” Erekat said.