French journalist Christian Chesnot confirmed that Qatar’s Emir worst fear is the foreign press, that he tries as much as possible to control and not to give it any space or freedom to work or convoy the true picture of his country.
France Inter reported in a press release of the reporter of France Inter, Christian Chesnot, in which he confirmed that the profession of reporting and journalism is one of the most difficult professions to take in Qatar.
The French press agent, who has visited Qatar several times, says that although the country is not a war zone, getting information for a foreign reporter or journalist is very difficult.
He says that in this country of the size of two French provinces, populated by 200 000 inhabitants, one does not speak easily in a microphone or in front of a camera. Especially regarding sensitive topics.
In the face of the severe restrictions on the work of foreign journalists by Qatari authorities, the French reporter points out that most of the international journalists who come to Doha are interested in finance, geopolitics, and raw material deposits and nothing more.
“In Qatar, nobody will speak in front of a stranger,” says Chesnot. Speech is not as free as in Beirut or Cairo, where every foreign reporter is liable to expulsion or arrest in the event of broadcasting news that disturbs the Emir of Qatar."
This is what really happened to Christian Chesnot, who was detained on the plane that accompanied the French President Emmanuel Macaron's motorcade to Qatar last month to prevent him from entering the country, this only lasted for a few hours before reaching a diplomatic solution that would allow him to enter Doha.
The great Qatari anger was the price he paid as he published two books with Georges Malbrunot, chief reporter of Le Figaro, in which he revealed Qatar's way of handling the media, its international strategies, and the reasons behind its opacity and development prospects.
“Anyone who delivers sensitive information to a journalist is subject to dismissal and expulsion within 48 hours ... in Qatar, civil society does not exist, it is a working community only," says the reporter of France Inter.