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Qatari science braces for embargo impact

Qatar-based researchers have raised the alarm over the potential effects of a land, air and sea blockade imposed by the country’s neighbours, which is now in its sixth week.

The embargo, enforced by an alliance led by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt, could harm Qatari science in the long term, local scientists have told Research Europe. The blockade severely reduces the ability of the country to trade and operate its airports, which harms scientific collaboration and the operation of universities. 

“For five years there has been a very positive trend in building scientific collaboration between the Gulf Cooperation Council countries,” said Hilal Lashuel, a former executive director of the Qatar Biomedical Research Institute. “What is happening now is a major setback—it will destroy trust.” 

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