In the news: 2007

What the media say about The Doha Debates...

As controversial and timely as the latest headlines, The Doha Debates have been making news themselves. Here are a few of the stories that have aired or been written about us:

Gulf Times
Gulf Times
Tuesday, September 25 2007

A Qatari student debating team could compete internationally as soon as next year, according to leading debating coaches from the world famous Oxford Union in the UK.

The Sun
The Sun
Friday, September 07 2007

Former Beirut hostage Terry Waite says the West must open peace talks with al-Qaeda boss Osama bin Laden.

Gulf News
Gulf News
Friday, September 07 2007
In the chair, Tim Sebastian's trademark combative style kept the debate focused on the question, and channelled the wide range of points from the audience to the issue at hand...
Opinion, Gulf News
Thursday, September 06 2007
At this delicate moment in American foreign policy, the BBC is due to launch the new season of the controversial Doha Debates, with the first debate due this week on whether it is time to talk to Al Qaida.......
Editorial , The Gulf Times
Wednesday, September 05 2007
And while other countries in the Middle East would have approached such an initiative with varying degrees of caution and apprehension, Qatar has once again proved that it is not backward in coming forward on the world stage.
Comment is Free, The Guardian Unlimited
Wednesday, June 13 2007
This is an issue that rarely gets discussed in public forums, though it is beginning to come to the surface. Last year it was tackled in one of the Doha Debates, with the motion that "This house believes the family is a major obstacle to reform in the Arab world." One of the problems highlighted was the way families take it upon themselves to make decisions - on career choices and marriage partners, for example - which, in the west, would more usually be a matter for the individuals concerned.
Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar Report
June, 2007
For the first time the popular Doha Debates were held outside of Qatar at the world famous debating society of Oxford University, and WCMC-Q medical student, Fouad Otaki, was there. "It was such an interesting experience," he said. "Oxford is a place I've heard a lot about. Professional debating really is an art form. It's something I'm an amateur at so it was great to be given the opportunity to develop those skills..
Comment is Free, The Guardian
Friday, April 06 2007

In March 2007, the Doha Debate motion was, 'This House believes the Palestinians should give up their full right of return'. Two of the speakers, who were on opposing teams, carried on the debate on the pages of the online version of the Guardian newspaper.

" It was a pleasure meeting you at last week's Doha Debate on the Palestinian right of return. I think that both of us are in very interesting positions to discuss this issue as we are both refugees, but neither of us changed the other's beliefs. As Professor Ilan Pappe put it so eloquently at the Doha Debate, no people should have to choose between military occupation and forced exile...

Gulf Times
Gulf Times
Wednesday, February 21 2007

The Doha Debates, now in its third year, has changed the perceptions of its anchor, noted TV personality Tim Sebastian, about the Arab world. Sebastian said he was surprised to see "how sophisticated, passionate, serious, engaged and enthusiastic the participating students are. One can easily find different shades of opinion.

Tuesday, February 20 2007

Lord Ahmed of Rotherham .... Who last night spoke out over veils in a debate in the heart of the Arab world, stressed that a sensible discussion was needed urgently within Muslim communities about whether veils represented a danger to integration in British society. He backed the motion "This House believes the face veil is a barrier to integration in the West" at a debate in Doha, Qatar.