A recent book titled Qatar Papers, authored by French journalists Georges Malbrunot and Christian Chesnot, revealed the extent of Qatar’s murky history of funding the Muslim Brotherhood, in Europe.
The two investigative reporters base their 295-page book on a plethora of official documents and testimonies that shed light on Doha’s extensive funding of Islamist groups in order to promote MB ideology. Even though its 14 chapters mainly focused on France’s experience, the read underlines the MB’s expansionist ambition seeking to fuel religious extremism all over Europe.
It also uncovers evidence that cheques and money transfers from Qatar have been used to underwrite more than 140 projects around Europe. It is worth noting that investigations included six different European countries next to French cities. T
The book also documents payments of €72 million to groups in seven European countries.
Tariq Ramadan, a contentious Islamist thinker and well-known MB figure in Europe who spent eight months in jail over rape allegations, is cited by the book for having strong ties with a Qatari charity foundation.
According to the book, Ramadan was paid €35,000 a month as a consultant to the Qatar Foundation, a body set up by Qatari royals. Just before his arrest early last year that saw Ramadan under criminal investigation, bank documents show that he withdrew €590,000 from Qatari bank accounts.
Even more alarmingly, documents found in the Swiss home of Youssef Nada, a formerly prominent MB leader, set out a strategy for co-opting mayors and other local bodies as tools of influence. They highlighted French intelligence warnings about Qatari support for the L'Union des organisations islamiques de France, an umbrella body in France.
Apart from the funds directed to leading MB figures in France and Switzerland, institutions such as Mucivi, or Le Musée des civilisations de l'Islam, a museum in Geneva that openly displays MB propaganda were financed by Qatar.