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Shabina Khatri

Shabina S. Khatri is an American journalist freelancing in Doha, Qatar. While in the Gulf, she has reported on Doha’s struggle to transform from a tiny desert peninsula that imports everything (including people – expats comprise more than 80% of the population) into the region’s premier cultural, political and economic hub. You can follow her on Twitter @dohanews and

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Latest posts by Shabina Khatri

3 February 2011

Qatar: Down with Mubarak, residents say

Down with Mubarak. That is the popular sentiment in the tiny Gulf Arab country of Qatar, whose residents have been furiously filling the Internet with support for Egyptian protesters, criticisms...

30 January 2011

Qatar: Thousands of ticket-holders turned away from Asian Cup final

Qatar hits a snag with Asian Cup final, as thousands of ticket-holders are banned at the gate for security reasons. Irate, disappointed and heartbroken fans fill the Internet with their...

2 December 2010

Qatar: Jeers, Cheers as Country is Awarded 2022 World Cup

Qatar celebrates after FIFA awards the country World Cup 2022 bid - Internet responds with cheers and jeers for the tiny desert country's win over the US, Australia, South Korea...

22 November 2010

Qatar: Excitement, Apprehension Build as World Cup Decision Nears

As the buzz builds over who will be awarded the 2022 World Cup bid in two weeks, so does the Internet chatter. Here is a roundup of online reactions in...

31 July 2010

Qatar: Residents survive change to eight-digit phone numbers

In an effort to meet future demand, Qatar changes most mobile and landline numbers from seven to eight digits. Residents complain, but find the transition to be easier than expected.

16 May 2010

Qatar: NYT's article draws fire from locals and residents alike

Shabina Khatri reports on rising tensions between locals and expats as Doha residents extol, protest New York Times depiction of Qataris as coddled, self-indulgent creatures, hated by the foreigners who...

1 April 2010

Qatar: Expats outraged by plans to scrap visa-on-arrival policy

Effective May 1, Qatar plans to scrap its visa-on-arrival policy for dozens of nations currently exercising the option. Dismayed expats worry about seeing their families and predict that the additional...

27 February 2010

Qatar: Artist MF Husain trades Indian passport for Qatari one

Reactions on the Internet ranged from shock, dismay and delight as MF Husain, one of India's most celebrated and reviled artists, is offered Qatari citizenship - and accepts.

19 January 2010

Qatar: Did Doha finally get a Wal Mart?

Breaking news out of Qatar - Doha finally gets a Wal Mart! Hopes soared and then crashed in Doha on Monday as news that a Walmart has opened here spread...

21 December 2009

Qatar: Critiques bristle; calls to shut down popular online forum

A series of scathing posts on Qatar Living, an popular online forum, prompts locals to call for site's demise. Campaign not against all expats, says founder of anti-QL Facebook group.

23 November 2009

Qatar: Cartoon of maid abusing child raises ire

A cartoon published in a local paper in Qatar depicting a crazed maid abusing a child has raised the ire of Doha bloggers, many of whom are condemning the possible...

13 November 2009

Qatar: No one is above the law – really?

Doha bloggers bemused, incredulous and wistful by official remarks that no one in Qatar is above the law. A debate over the merits of that statement quickly evolves into a...

10 November 2009

Qatar: Anticipation mounts over England vs Brazil football friendly

All eyes are on conservative Qatar, which is bidding for the 2022 World Cup, to see how it handles the upcoming England vs. Brazil football friendly, with residents alternately excited...

16 September 2009

Qatar: Country's woes not expat labor's fault

Comments ranged from scornful to incredulous upon the release of a government study blaming underskilled expat laborers for Qatar's falling productivity rate. Shabina Khatri taps into the discussion and brings...

28 August 2009

Qatar reflects on spirit, practice of Ramadan

Residents of Doha, Qatar acclimate to Ramadan and the special perks and restrictions that come with it.

24 June 2009

Qatar: Media Freedom Centre Head Resignation Mourned and Celebrated

After a tumultuous eight months as director-general of the nascent Doha Centre for Media Freedom, Robert Ménard announces his resignation. The centre, which will also lose three department heads, will...


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