Monday March 04, 2024

Scholz meets Qatari emir to talk about Israel, Hamas

Published : 12 Oct 2023, 20:02

  DF News Desk
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (R) welcomes Emir of Qatar Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in Berlin at the Chancellery on Thursday. Photo: Michael Kappeler/dpa.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has received the Emir of Qatar Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, one of the most notable supporters of the Islamist militant group Hamas, in a flurry of diplomacy on the dramatic escalation of conflict in the Middle East, reported dpa.

After Saturday's large-scale attack on Israel by Hamas, which rules Gaza, Qatar had blamed Israel alone and referred to the "constant violations of the rights of the Palestinian people."

According to Hamas, however, Qatar is also trying to mediate on an exchange of Israeli hostages and Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.

Scholz greeted the emir at the Chancellery before the two went for lunch. A joint press conference was not planned.

The meeting took place within hours of Scholz's government statement to parliament on the recent events, in which he assured Israel of Germany's unbreakable solidarity.

Scholz defended his meeting with the emir, telling lawmakers that Qatar had an important mediating role which it was now putting to use.

Scholz said he was also in close contact with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who in turn had channels of communication to Gaza.

In addition, the chancellor said he would speak to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday.

"All three can play an important role in mediation and de-escalation in the current situation," Scholz told parliament.

He added: "It would be irresponsible not to use all the contacts that can help in this dramatic situation."