"QATAR IS SECURE"
Qatar Today talks to Brig Nasser bin Fahad Al Thani in the Ministry of Interior (MOI) about internal security in the Middle East and also the upcoming Milipol Qatar 2014.
Qatar will be playing host to the prestigious biennial event Milipol Qatar 2014 this month and Qatar Today talks to Brig Nasser bin Fahad Al Thani at the Ministry of Interior about internal security in the Middle East and also the upcoming Milipol Qatar 2014.
Internal security has been accorded top priority by the governments in the region in view of the growing economies on account of vast oil and gas reserves and all measures are being taken to maintain law and order in the country, says Brig Sheikh Nasser bin Fahad Al Thani.
Though the US State Department has assessed the crime rate in Qatar as low compared with other countries, Brig Sheikh Nasser, who is also president of the biennial and the 10th edition of the region's premier internal security exhibition Milipol Qatar 2014 Committee, says that the government is not complacent as internal security is more relevant to the region, particularly Qatar, in view of its growing economy.
“Qatar, which is hosting a series of international events including Milipol Qatar 2014, 12th FINA World Swimming Championships (25m), Qatar PSA Squash World Open and 47th World Military Sailing Championships later this year, Multaqa Qatar, Cityscape Qatar, Middle East Luxury Travel Show and World Men's Handball Championships in 2015, besides FIFA World Cup in 2022, is determined to see that the events are incident-free,” he says.
Quoting the findings of a survey by trade publisher “En toute sécurite” www.securi
ty-info.com, he says the Middle East's security markets grew 12% to a value of 16billion Euros (QR76.79 billion) in 2012, compared with an average of 5.5% growth in overall spending worldwide.
“In the Middle East, the internal state security market segment touched 5.8billion Euros (QR36.67 billion) in 2012, an increase of 18%, among the strongest growth seen worldwide. The share of internal state security spent within the entire security market (which also includes security premises of fire and electronic security, etc) in the Middle East is 36%, around double the equivalent share by percentage in Europe,” he says.
In the 2014 rankings issued by the Economy and Peace Institute in collaboration with the Peace and Conflicts Studies Centre at the University of Sydney in Australia, Qatar stood first in the MENA region, and was ranked 22nd in the world among 162 countries. Qatar has also been acquiring the most advanced technology and the latest techniques in its fight against terrorist and criminal activities. “So far, based on the Qatar Crime and Safety Report issued by the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) in February 2014, the US State Department has assessed the current crime rate in Qatar to be low. OSAC was created in 1985 under the Federal Advisory Committee Act to promote security cooperation between American private sector interests
worldwide and the US State Department,” he says.
The OSAC “Council” is comprised of 34 private sector and public sector member organisations that represent specific industries or agencies operating abroad. Qatar has been ranked 6th in the MENA region for 2014 in the Global Peace Index.
Security in place
Major international events scheduled to take place in and be hosted by Qatar, such as the 2022 FIFA World Cup, are characterised by the participation and presence of top football personalities and their fans from all over the world as well as VIPs, government officials and celebrities.
According to Brig Sheikh Nasser, as early as now, Qatar is preparing all the necessary security arrangements for such a high profile global sporting event. “What I can assure is that we definitely aim at providing the safest and most secure holding of the event,” he says.
Research & development
Brig Sheikh Nasser points out that, although terrorist and criminal activities may have a universal classification as internal security threats, their nature, characteristics and manner in which they are carried out may vary in accordance with the local setting of every state or society.
“Thus, sharing of intelligence information as well as the research and development that go into the development of internal security solutions are of great importance to all security agencies worldwide,” he says.
Furthermore, through such sharing of intelligence information and expertise, the various states determine similarities or differences, and therefore help in the crucial decision-making process in which technology and technique may be applicable to specific threats.
“Undoubtedly, both external and internal security threats have become increasingly sophisticated. Accordingly, such sophistication must be met and addressed by even more sophisticated technologies and processes that are applicable to specific localities,” Brig Sheikh Nasser says.
Milipol Qatar, to be held between November 10 and 12, is an opportunity for local companies specialised in security to promote their products in the Middle East and the world, opines Brig Sheikh Nasser.
“We are looking forward to receiving
“With internal security being a topmost priority in the region and Qatar due to the rapid economic developments and the presence, vast oil and gas resources, it is expected that organisations – both in the public and private sectors – will have increased spending on security-related solutions due to the growing sophistication of potential security threats.”
BRIG SHEIKH NASSER BIN FAHAD AL THANI
Ministry of Interior
guests from around the world and specially from the GCC and the Middle East and we are hoping that this year's exhibition will be one of the best and even better than the 2012 edition,” says Brig Sheikh Nasser.
Milipol Qatar, which was instituted in 1996, has been organised by the MOI, in partnership with Comexposium from Paris. Through the years, this event hosted by Qatar has grown and is considered the most important security event conducted in the region.
“Participating security agencies will benefit from the presence of regional and even global exhibitors and experts, as well as government agencies incharge of security-related responsibilities. Not only do these security agencies stand to benefit from learning about the latest technologies and techniques in internal security, but also profit from potential business opportunities,” says Brig Sheikh Nasser.
“It is expected that organisations – both in the public and private sectors – will have increased spending on security-related solutions due to the growing sophistication of potential security threats,” he says.
Significantly, the discussions as well as products and services that are to be showcased by exhibitors during Milipol Qatar 2014 will most likely have complementary applications for securing such high-profile international events.
Brig Sheikh Nasser says that the issue of internal security has encompassed strong cooperation among states and border security agencies particularly due to increased movement and travel of people – either for leisure, livelihood or business purposes.
“The Ministry of Interior will have a 1,016 sq. m. pavilion including Ministry departments and Milipol Qatar Committee. Those departments include: Information Systems, Coastal and Border Guards and Prevention Security in collaboration with Public Relations, Industrial Security, Criminal Evidence and Information and NCC, in addition to the Internal Security Forces (Lekhwaya) who will participate with a 1,056 sq. m. pavilion,” he adds