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Qatar Ruling Family Members Prevented from Visiting Exiled Emir

May 4, 1996

MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) _ Seven members of Qatar’s ruling family were ordered off a plane heading to the United Arab Emirates, foiling their plans to visit Qatar’s deposed emir.

Sources close to the former emir, Sheik Khalifa Bin Hamad Al Thani, said today that Qatar authorities ordered the family members off the commercial flight on Monday in Doha, capital of the Gulf state.

There was no immediate comment from Qatar authorities.

Sheik Khalifa lives in exile in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates. He was deposed and replaced by his son, Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, in a bloodless coup in June 1995.

Members of the Al Thani family had wanted to visit him on the Muslim feast of Eid al-Adha, the sources said on condition of anonymity.

Authorities confiscated the passport of one family member, Sheik Saud bin Fahd Al Thani, the sources said.

In February, Qatar said it had prevented an attempt to overthrow the current emir. At least 60 police and army officers linked to the former emir reportedly have been arrested.

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