Saudi Company Pulls Qatar Hate Song as Gulf Powers Reunite
Saudi Arabia’s Rotana Media Group deleted a hate song against Qatar from YouTube, as the countries eased a three-year regional rift.
The song, “Teach Qatar,” is meant to instruct gas-rich Qatar about the purported error of its ways and the reasons four Arab states chose to boycott it. It was written by Turki Al-Shikh, a senior royal court adviser and a longtime friend of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Rotana removed the song from its YouTube channel after Saudi Arabia reopened its air, land and sea borders with Qatar on Monday, easing a crisis that complicated U.S. efforts to isolate Iran.
On Tuesday, Qatar’s emir attended the Gulf Cooperation Council’s annual summit for the first time since the kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt severed trade, travel and diplomatic ties with the emirate in 2017.
The song was released that year.
“Teach Qatar, and those who support Qatar, that our country is patient,” the lyrics go. “But when things become dangerous, by God you will see its men take action. Twenty years of intrigue, treachery, and conspiracies we are aware of.”
The boycotting nations accused Qatar of funding militant groups and building close ties with their chief regional foe, Iran. Qatar denies the charges.
“Teach Qatar” had both detractors and supporters in the kingdom.
“We released this song because we wanted to defend our country,” said Ehab Altobiqi, a 38-year-old biomedical engineer from Medina.
“They never should have released it to begin with, especially since we knew we were going to restore relations with Qatar at some point,” said Bandar Alotaibi, 33, of Eastern Province.
For some Qataris, the acrimony can’t be so easily eradicated.
“They can delete whatever they want to but it will still remain in memory,” a woman who identified herself as Qatari national Mai Khalifa tweeted.
Other anti-Qatar songs remain uploaded on YouTube. Rotana Group didn’t respond to several phone calls seeking comment.
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