Homeland Security's Napolitano, in Qatar, calls for 'effective intelligence' against terrorism

Thursday, January 6, 2011   E-Mail this story   Free Headline Alerts

ABU DHABI Qatar and the United States have signed a security cooperation agreement.

Officials said the two countries signed an agreement to enhance joint efforts against counter-insurgency and money-laundering. They said the so-called Letter of Intent was signed during the visit by U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to Doha on Jan. 2.

"This agreement will help us expand collaboration with Qatar in order to better protect the citizens of both nations against the evolving threats we face," Ms. Napolitano said.

The agreement was also signed by Qatari Interior Minister Abdullah Bin Khalifa Al Thani. Officials said the letter would bolster the exchange of intelligence, enhance passenger screening at airports and battle money-laundering.

"[The agreement includes] New partnerships to enhance international aviation security, cybersecurity, disaster response and emergency preparedness, and the protection of critical infrastructure and key resources," the U.S. Homeland Security Department said.

Qatar has been deemed a key U.S. partner in energy and regional security. U.S. diplomats, however, have complained that Qatar has done little to track and capture Al Qaida operatives.

"Secretary Napolitano also discussed with the [Qatari] minister the importance of effective intelligence and law enforcement action against Al Qaida and other global terrorist organizations," the Homeland Security Department said.

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