Obama on Qatar

Interesting comments about the emir of Qatar from President Obama. The remarks were picked up by a microphone which Obama thought was switched off.

Describing Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani as a "pretty influential guy", the president said:

"He is a big booster, big promoter of democracy all throughout the Middle East. Reform, reform, reform.

"Now he himself is not reforming significantly. There's no big move toward democracy in Qatar. But you know part of the reason is that the per capita income of Qatar is $145,000 a year. That will dampen a lot of conflict."

Posted by Brian Whitaker, 17 April 2011.