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Thursday, July 22, 2010     INTELLIGENCE BRIEFING

Thousands of security cameras to be installed throughout insecure Qatari capital

ABU DHABI — Security cameras will be installed throughout the capital city Doha as Qatar becomes the latest Gulf Arab state to launch a security drive amid regional threats.


The Interior Ministry has approved plans for measures to enhance public safety in Qatar, which contains a huge expatriate presence. Officials said the focus would be on monitoring critical facilities and urban areas that serve as potential insurgency targets.

"The diversity of nationalities and cultures is a major challenge we face in combating and preventing crimes," Qatari Brig. Gen. Nasser Jaber Al Naimi said.

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Al Naimi, director of security in Doha, said cameras were being installed in shopping malls, major roads and other locations.

Officials said the thousands of cameras meant for installation would be linked to a command and control center. They said the C2 facility would direct persistent surveillance of numerous areas in and around Doha.

The Interior Ministry has sought to significantly expand Qatar's police and security forces, now based on expatriate officers, many of them from Pakistan. Officials said police have encountered a steady increase in crime in Doha over the last year, particularly in the shopping district.

Al Naimi linked the increase in crime to the influx of foreign labor in Qatar. He said most of the crime was not violent and included passing bad checks, alcohol and morality offenses.

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