Prior to the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan, Qatar had hosted meetings between the United States (US) and the Taliban. Where, an agreement between the US and the Taliban on the withdrawal of troops was also reached in the country.
Read: Qatar: Recognizing Taliban Government Not Priority Right Now
According to analysts, this is not an accident. Analysts said this step was deliberately taken by Doha to ensure that the West would protect them when a threat came.
Analysts describe Qatar’s emergence as an intermediary in Afghanistan as part of the small but wealthy nation’s carefully nurtured strategy to enhance its own security, by becoming indispensable as a venue for international mediation.
Read: US: First Face-to-face with Taliban Honest and Professional
Qatar has long had big ambitions, hosting the largest US air base in the Middle East and the most influential TV channel. Previously, Doha had squandered much of its regional influence over the past decade by overstepping its bounds after the 2011 Arab Spring uprisings, backing pro-democracy and rebel movements across the region.
Kristin Diwan, an analyst with the Institute of Arab Gulf States in Washington, called the patient diplomatic facilities a classic way for a small country to increase its international relevance.
“Given the size of the population, a substantial military projection is a difficult proposition. But Qatar can bring real value through the relationships it maintains, especially in both Western and Islamic parties and especially those the US is reluctant to approach directly,” he said.