Day day since 2007 qatar has marked National, carrying out a decree by the then Crown Prince and current Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani [File: Showkat Shafi /Al Jazeera]
Qatar is celebrating its National Day on Tuesday amid a continuing blockade by neighbouring countries, which seems to have created a feeling of unity among residents and nationals in the peninsula.
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The December 18 holiday marks the date in 1878 which Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani succeeded his father because the emir and led the united states towards unity.
“Provided that it had been proven by our deeds, Qatar shall remain free,” is this year’s National Day slogan, combining a verse from Qatar’s national anthem and a verse from the founder Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed bin Al Thani.
The celebrations happen in various towns and cities across Qatar, doha namely, Al Wakra and Al Shamal. A one-day holiday was announced to celebrate the occasion.
The main event may be the Corniche Parade in Doha, with the current presence of Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and several high ranking people from specialists and foreign mission representatives.
This year’s military parade will undoubtedly be three times bigger than this past year, Major-General Salem Al Ahbabi said, adding the function shall feature land and naval forces, besides an air show by the country’s air force.
‘Pride and resilience’
It may be the second year Qatar celebrates its National Day amid the blocakde that is imposed by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt and bahrain.
In June 2017, the quartet cut diplomatic ties with Doha and imposed a land, sea, and air blockade on the Gulf state, accusing it of supporting opposition and terrorism political movements, including the Muslim Brotherhood.
Qatar has rejected the accusations as baseless repeatedly.
Highlighting Qatar’s stance on sovereignty amid the dispute, On Saturday sheikh Tamim addressed the Doha Forum, saying “our position have not changed on how best to solve the Gulf crisis”.
“This could be attained by lifting the siege and resolving difference through dialogue and non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs,” the emir said.
Last, the Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said in a statement to Qatar News Agency (QNA) that National Day celebrations “hold new and deep messages to the siege countries concerning the strength of Qatar”.
Major National Day events:
Doha Corniche: The parade will start at 2.45pm at Doha Corniche. A lot more than 20,000 seats are for sale to the audience. The afternoon parade a military parade accompanied by an air show will need place during. The festivities shall conclude with fireworks for ten minutes from 8pm.
Darb Al Saai: A prime location for National Day celebrations, 30 entities from the national government and non-government sector are participating.
Katara: Celebrating Qatar national day with evening festivities, including a firework show at 8pm for ten minutes and live performances.
Aspire: Aspire Zone Foundation celebrates national day by installing 16 different booths selling traditional Qatari goods.
Other Venues: Wakra Sports club, Barwa Al Baraha in Industrial Area, Asian Accommodation City in Doha Industrial Area, Asian Town, Shahaniya Industrial Area.