1 July 2013
New York Times: Qatar takes an outsize role in supplying Syrian opposition
The New York Times reported on Saturday on the aggressive role taken by Qatar in using a shadowy arms network, involving transit through Turkey, Libyan stockpiles, and Chinese-made shoulder-fired missiles that could, according to warnings by US officials, be used to shoot down civilian aircraft if found at the hands of terrorist organizations.
When supplying the rebels in Libya, Qatar was reportedly giving weapons to Islamic militants, and similar concerns have now been raised with regard to Syria, where the Qatari shipments have enabled the Islamists in the north to become the most capable section of the opposition, the New York Times writes. The small oil-rich gulf state has purportedly taken an outsize role in Syria in order to pursue its interests this ‘backyard’ thereby increasing its influence in the Middle East, without its Western and Arab allies having been able to leverage its policies due to their own strategic alliances with the state.