Sheikh Tamim at the Gulf Cooperation Council summit in Doha in 2014 (AFP)
By Nadine Dahan
The president of a US-based Saudi lobbyist group stated on Twitter that the emir of Qatar’s alleged support of Iran and “insults” against Riyadh could see him suffer the same fate as Egypt’s deposed president, Mohamed Morsi.
Salman al-Ansari, of the Saudi American Public Relation Affairs Committee (SAPRAC), sparked outrage by saying: “To the Emir of Qatar: regarding your taking the side of the extremist Iranian government, and your insulting of the custodian of the two holy mosques.
“I want to remind you that Mohamed Morsi did the same thing and ended up isolated and imprisoned.”
Users took his tweet as a direct threat against Qatar and its leader, Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.
Some considered it to be ironic that al-Ansari invited Israel to contribute to Saudi’s vision 2030, and then threatened to overthrow the leadership in Qatar because of their relationship with Iran.
Translation: The president of the Saudi lobby in the US that called Israel to participate in #Vision2030 threatens the overthrow of the Qatari leadership because of its relationship with Iran
Translation: The Zionists’ lover, president of the Saudi lobby in Washington slips again and demands normalisation with Zionists, but this is how he talks to others!
Users were also taken aback by what seemed to be pride in what had happened to Mohamed Morsi, the former president of Egypt who was overthrown in a military coup in July 2013.
Translation: #Sisi_regime_is_a_failure President of the Saudi lobby in the US boasts of organising the coup against Dr Morsi, and threatens the Emir of Qatar with organising a coup against him
Translation: President of what is known as the Saudi lobby in the US boasts of organising a coup against Morsi and promises the state of Qatar with the same fate! Saudi must absolve itself from these remarks
Users took the tweet as a serious threat to Qatar.
صدى البلد/ #عاجل | رسالة نارية من رئيس اللوبي السعودي فى #أمريكا لأمير #قطر : « ستلقي مصير #مرسي » #ا… – عبر نبض http://nabdapp.com/t/42446601
#عاجل | رسالة نارية من رئيس اللوبي السعودي فى #أمريكا لأمير #قطر : « ستلقي مصير #مرسي » #البلد |
…. قال رئيس اللوبي السعودي في أمريكا سلمان الأنصاري عبر حسابه بموقع “تويتر” لأمير قطر
Translation: An explosive message from the president of the Saudi lobby in America to the Emir of Qatar
هذا يبغى يدافع عن السعودية راح اتفاخر بدعمها للانقلابات https://twitter.com/salansar1/status/869322783846694918 …
Translation: This guy wanted to defend Saudi, and ended up boasting its support for coups
Recent events have strained relationships between Qatar and its Gulf neighbours.
Qatar was subject to hacking in recent weeks, when hackers posted a fake story quoting Qatar’s leader, and they didn’t hold back in their responses.
The fake story hit Qatar’s official news agency website and Twitter account causing ripples of reaction across the Gulf, leading to Saudi Arabia and the UAE to both block Qatari-based news outlets including Al Jazeera from broadcasting in their territory.
In addition, the Qatar News Agency’s hacked Twitter account carried a false story in Arabic apparently from the country’s foreign minister, Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, about Qatar withdrawing its ambassadors from several nearby countries.
“There is a hostile media campaign against the state of Qatar, which we will confront,” al-Thani said, adding the campaign was “particularly in the United States”.
Many users considered this attack by al-Ansari to be a dangerous development, with some understanding it as the threat of a coup.