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Qatar replaces foreign minister as part of major cabinet reshuffle

Qatar replaces foreign minister as part of major cabinet reshuffle

Several ministries have been clubbed in the new cabinet

Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Al-Thani has replaced the country’s foreign minister as part of a major cabinet reshuffle, it was announced on Wednesday.

Sheikh Mohammad Bin Abdul Rahman Al Thani, who served as assistant foreign minister for international cooperation affairs, has replaced Khalid Bin Mohammad Al Attiyah as foreign minister.

Meanwhile Al Attiyah has been named as state minister for defence affairs, the official Qatar News Agency reported. The emir, Sheikh Tamim, currently holds the defence ministry post.

A new female minister – Dr Hanan Al Kuwari, the managing director of Hamad Medical Corporation – has now been appointed as the minister for Public Health replacing Abdullah bin Khalid al Qahtani.

The energy and finance ministers have been unchanged.

Meanwhile several ministries have also been combined – Transport and Communications is now under a single minister; the ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage has been clubbed with the Youth and Sports portfolio; and the Municipality and Environment ministries have also been merged.

This the first major cabinet reshuffle announced by the emir following his appointment to the role in 2013.

A diplomat in Doha told reuters that cost-cutting was a reason for the reshuffle. reuters

“But this is also about Sheikh Tamim’s slow consolidation of power after two and a half years in the job,” the diplomat said.

“He’s still pushing out the old timers loyal to the former emir who were not necessarily that effective but couldn’t be sacked all in one go.”

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