Qatari envoy Mohammed al-Emadi traveled to the Gaza Strip this week, according to several reports in Palestinian and regional media.
Emadi has played a key role in Gaza over the years. In March, he urged Israeli officials to work to de-escalate tensions, and his trip this time also coincides with tensions along the Gaza border.
Emadi arrived in Gaza on Thursday morning, Palestinian media outlets reported, while media linked to Hamas said he arrived Wednesday night.
He arrived with a delegation through the Erez crossing near Beit Hanun in the northern Gaza Strip, Palestinian news site Amad reported. He arrived Wednesday, and his goal was to calm tensions, Beirut-based newspaper Al Akhbar reported. He arrived to hold meetings and check on the progress of projects supervised by the Qatari-backed Gaza Reconstruction Committee, a Fatah-linked website reported.
Qatari envoy marks first visit to Gaza since Ramadan
In March, Emadi was also in the region to discuss de-escalation of tensions. This took place within the context of Ramadan and the lead-up to Passover.
At the time, he had said Israel should “refrain from escalating the situation, especially during Ramadan, and stop provoking the feelings of all Muslims,” according to the Gaza Reconstruction Committee, which is headed by Emadi.
Doha has played a key role in working with the UN, the Palestinian Authority, and Egypt to move funds to Gaza for support of civil servants and others over the years.
Emadi was in Gaza in May as well. At the time, Middle East Monitor reported: “Ambassador Mohammed Al-Emadi, the head of the Qatari Committee for the Reconstruction of Gaza, left the Gaza Strip yesterday through the Beit Hanun (Erez) border crossing, having completed a visit that lasted for several days, according to a statement issued by the Qatari Foreign Ministry.”
At the time, United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland was at the headquarters of the Qatari Committee in Gaza, the report said. He also met with Thomas White, the director of the Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA).