Diplomatic Briefing

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Newsline: Qatar’s diplomat denies involvement in EU corruption case

Qatar reiterated on Sunday that the country denies any involvement in a corruption case being investigated by Belgian authorities involving people linked to the European Parliament. A statement on Sunday by a diplomat from Qatar’s mission to the European Union said “preconceived prejudices” led the parliament to vote on Thursday to suspend all work on legislation involving Qatar and to bar Qatari representatives from its premises. The suspension affects legislation linked to visa liberalisation, an EU-Qatar aviation agreement and planned visits until the allegations have been confirmed or dismissed. “The decision to impose such a discriminatory restriction…will negatively effect regional and global security cooperation, as well as ongoing discussions around global energy poverty and security,” the diplomat said. Belgian authorities have charged four people linked to the European Parliament over allegations World Cup host Qatar lavished them with cash and gifts to influence decision-making. Qatar has previously denied any wrongdoing. A spokesperson for the European Parliament declined to comment on the accusation.

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