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These Egyptians Are Not Here For Their Government Breaking Off Ties With Qatar

“Qatar will take care of Egyptians — Egypt won’t.”

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Thousands of Egyptians who live and work in Qatar fear they might have to leave the country following a diplomatic rift between the oil-rich Gulf kingdom and the Saudi-led group of Arab nations, including Egypt.

Hamad I Mohammed / Reuters

Following Egypt’s decision to cut ties with Qatar, Egyptians are expressing their admiration for their new home in the Persian Gulf online, saying they have nothing to do with their government’s policies.

This video that's being shared widely by Egyptians both inside and outside the country sums up the feelings of many of them.

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In the video, Egyptians appear on camera, say their full name, the number of years they have been living in Qatar, and then repeat: “The Egyptian media doesn’t represent me.”

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Since the video was posted on Monday, the phrase has given a once popular hashtag new life, with expats using it to stress that the Egyptian media's stance on Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani do not reflect their views.

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"To everyone who wants to be a follower of the mercenary Egyptian media, we say: The Egyptian media doesn't represent me."

Via Facebook: 2bna2masrfeqatar

“We have half a million Egyptians living here. If each one sends $500 to his family in Egypt every month, we are talking about $3 billion every year [in remittance] — if you cut ties with Qatar, where are you going to bring this money from, and who will feed those half million family! Don’t be stupid."

Via Facebook: 2bna2masrfeqatar

"If Egypt wasn't 100% sure that Qatar is a decent regime and its people are respectful, they would never dare cut ties. There are more than 200,000 Egyptians here (Qatar will take care of Egyptians - Egypt won’t)."

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"Qatar is paying the price for not caving to Saudi Arabia, and [Egyptian President Abdel Fateh el-Sisi], who sleeps with Israel, is cutting ties with Qatar on charges of supporting terrorist entities like Hamas."

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"As Egyptians in Qatar, we are worried about the situation in 'occupied' Egypt."

Many Egyptians also shared videos and images that showed the Qatari emir meeting with with Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a populist Qatari scholar who has ties to the Muslim Brotherhood.

Via Facebook: 2bna2masrfeqatar

“I swear [Tamim] slapped them [Saudi Arabia] badly! [You can] die with your anger! God protect Qatar and its people.”

Qaradawi, 80, has been living in Qatar since 1961, and is seen as a spiritual guide to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood. Following the toppling of Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi in 2013, Qaradawi issued a fatwa urging all Egyptians to support the ousted leader.

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Egypt has asked the Qatari ambassador in Cairo to leave the country but unlike Saudi Arabia and the UAE, it hasn't recalled its citizens. Qatar has not made any statement yet on whether it will continue to host workers from Arab countries including Egypt.

Maged Atef is a journalist based in Cairo.

Contact Maged Atef at .

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