Qatar’s defence minister said on Tuesday that his country’s long-term strategic ‘ambition’ is to join NATO.

Speaking on the anniversary of a year-long bitter Gulf diplomatic dispute, which has seen Qatar separated from its former regional allies, Khalid bin Mohamed Al-Attiyah said Qatar wanted to become a full member of the 29-country alliance.

“Qatar today has become one of the most important countries in the region in terms of the quality of armament” Attiyah told the official magazine of the Qatari defence ministry, Altalaya.

“Regarding the membership, we are a main ally from outside NATO. The ambition is full membership if our partnership with NATO develops and our vision is clear.”

Earlier this month it emerged that Saudi leaders threatened ‘military action’ and asked French President Emmanuel Macron to intervene to prevent Qatar’s proposed purchase of the Russian S-400 air defence missile system.

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Patrick
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Patrick

Qatar you’re in, Turkey you’re out.

Steve10
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Steve10

Qatar and Turkey are strategic allies

Patrick
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Patrick

Turkey has a funny way of showing it.

Lewis
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Lewis

Whilst I dislike Tukey as much as the next guy on here, we can’t just kick them out of NATO. Their position on the Bospherous means that the Russian Black Sea fleet is contained in the black sea indefinitely in case of war. If they fall into Russia’s sphere of influence then the mediteranian becomes their playground.

farouk
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farouk

Qatar’s defence minister said on Tuesday that his country’s long-term strategic ‘ambition’ is to join NATO.

and on Wednesday NATO replied:
BRUSSELS: NATO today declined an overture by Qatar to join the Western military defence alliance, saying membership was reserved to the United States and Europe. It was responding to a comment by Qatar’s defence minister yesterday that his country’s long-term strategic “ambition” was to join NATO. “According to Article 10 of the Washington Treaty, only European countries can become members of NATO,” an official of the 29-country alliance told AFP. “Qatar is a valuable and longs ..

Spyinthesky
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Spyinthesky

Isn’t Canada a member of Nato. It seems that NATO headquarters aren’t sure.

John Fleming
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John Fleming

Member states of NATO are: Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States.

maurice10
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maurice10

I see no reason why not.

andy reeves
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andy reeves

nato will forever be involved in a fight in that part of the world, where everything changes overnight. given the size of exports to countries in that part of the globe, maybe the saudi’s could join too.

Sean
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Sean

More sense to allow Australia, New Zealand and Japan all join; all Western orientated nations.
(Could be particularly useful if the EU continues on its path of building its own EU defence structures whilst hacking off all non-EU NATO members.)

And while doing some left-field thinking, why not add a requirement for free-trade between all members of the alliance. Fight together, trade together.

spyinthesky
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spyinthesky

Nice idea though I can see the problems that would create when all sorts of South East Asia countries ask to join and we have to tell them that they aren’t White (or Japanese) enough.

Sean
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Sean

I’m not sure there would be issues as there aren’t any with Japan.
South Korea might be next though that might be best to avoid as it would be seen as provocative by the North.
The question comes as to after these two, what stable countries where the rule of law is sacrosanct and there is an established secure democratic constitution. Societies where freedom of speech and religious belief are ingrained culturally within the fabric of society. These take generations to achieve, something which Blair and Bush failed to understand in the reconstruction of Iraq.

andy reeves
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andy reeves

maybe chile and brazil? india?

Frank62
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Frank62

India? That would mean if India & Pakistan go to war again, NATO would have to go to ar against Pakistan. Doesn’t seem politically sensible to me.

Charles
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Charles

Fight together, trade together, thats interesting. Definitely for us brexit brits.

andy reeves
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andy reeves

bigger numbers, bigger deterrent.

Matt
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Matt

Now we see the strategy at play with Qatar buying Rafale, Typhoon, and F15 jets.

John Fleming
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John Fleming

NATO- North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. All liberal democracies and all situated on or near the Atlantic. ( although with the continual uncontrolled immigration, and foreign funded mosques, soon to be all muslim)

Where is Qatar, that haven of peace, democracy and tolerance?

Evan P
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Evan P

Another Australia denier?

andy reeves
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andy reeves

if they pour billions of 3 INTO THE U.K DEFENCE INDUSTRY, IT DOESN’T MATTER, REMEMBER MONEY IS GOD.

David Steeper
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Well many have tried but this article has succeeded I’m gobsmacked ! If they want a security guarantee they should just talk to the US, France or us. Somehow I doubt if they’re counting on anyone else in NATO riding to the rescue ! Whether we should is a different matter.

Anthony
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Anthony

I’d be in favour of any liberal democratic country that upholds the rule of law and human rights being able to join. Japan, south Korea, Australia and New Zealand. If any of these countries were threatened or invaded we’d probably get involved. Why have different defence agreements with these countries. Our common interest is deterring illiberal regimes whether oligarchy like Russia, communist dictatorship like China and North Korea, radical theocracy like Iran, military junta like Burma.

Jonathan
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Jonathan

NATO needs to re look at itself and what it’s defending, my preference would be any liberal democracy anywhere in the world, remove the geography as that’s a Cold War hang over and use it as a tool to defend our values. For to long liberal democracies have bumbled along thinking that the rest of the world will just naturally fall in line with ideas of freedom and the rule of law. Most of the worlds ruling elite don’t want it in their country thankyou and see it as the threat to their power bases that needs to have its… Read more »

Joe
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Joe

The jihadi backers in Qatar can obviously go and do one….
But I would be open the world’s capitalist democracies joining.

Australia, Japan, NZ, South Koea.

Call it the “Global Defence Initiative”
In time they will do battle with the Brotherhood of Nod

SoleSurvivor
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SoleSurvivor

Nice c&c reference 🙂

SoleSurvivor
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SoleSurvivor

Nice c&c reference 🙂

Will
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Will

It might be prudent for them to shut down the Taliban HQ there before they submit their membership application.

andy reeves
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andy reeves

and the al jazeera network.

Will
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Will

Nothing wrong with AJs coverage as long as you disregard anything they say about the middle East. Fox News are the people you need to be concerned about.

Martin
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Martin

NATO is better replaced by a global alliance of liberal democracy’s with advanced industrialised economies. it’s should also encompass free trade and enhanced freedom of movement. Kick out countries like turkey and give people in places like china and Russia clear choice, either play ball and join the club or keep playing rouge state and live in permanent poverty.

Elliott
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Elliott

Freedom of Movement? Lack of sovereignty over economic affairs? Those seem more like reasons to NOT join under any circumstances. The individual countries electorates should be the first and only Arbiter of their affairs. Military defense pacts are just that Military pacts. That is all they are and should remain so. Just because one country decides it wants to import parasites looking for a handout masquerading as refugees, should have no bearing on the decisions on another. Unless and until they present a risk to security. The people of a country did not create a welfare system for uninvited guests.… Read more »

Mr Bell
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Mr Bell

I would be reluctant to agree to gulf states joining NATO- they are all dubious democracies and have some slightly dodgy human rights records.
I would much rather Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand were invited to join- that would make NATO a much stronger military force.
Whilst we are at it- why not invite India as well- they are going to be a super power in the near future due to the sheer size of their populace and it makes sense to join them into our alliance guaranteeing their national defence and supporting NATO with an upcoming economic leviathan

andy reeves
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andy reeves

i’d prefer a country wiith the biggest democracy inld(india to be invited.