US University To Shut Qatar Campus Due To "Heightened Mideast Instability"
Texas A&M University announced it will close its Qatar campus, citing increased instability in the Middle East.
The decision, which is set to take place in the fall of 2023 and be completed within four years, has been met with criticism, including from the Qatar Foundation, its Gulf partner, which suggested misinformation influenced the move.
The closure follows intense political scrutiny of US colleges, amidst recent escalating violence in the region, including a Hamas-triggered war in Gaza on October 7, and allegations of anti-Semitism aimed at campuses in the US.
Qatar serves as a diplomatic conduit to Hamas and is involved in truce negotiations in Gaza. The Qatar Foundation stressed the positive impacts of its partnership with US institutions, lamenting the closure's disregard for such benefits.
Texas A&M has countered claims that its Qatar campus provided sensitive research to the Gulf state. US ambassador to Qatar, Timmy Davis, expressed disappointment, highlighting the campus's role in spreading US values and fostering innovation.
The conflict between Hamas and Israel led to significant casualties, with an AFP report based on Israeli figures documenting around 1,160 deaths, mostly civilians.
Israel's retaliatory measures resulted in at least 27,947 fatalities, mainly women and children, according to the Hamas-run health ministry. Numerous hostages were also taken, with some still held in Gaza.