There was a strange new development in the Gulf crisis reported on Friday, as social media photos revealed that Qatar had been removed from a map in the Abu Dhabi Louvre.
Louvre Abu Dhabi opened its doors to the public in November, ten years after initial agreements with France to do so. It paid an estimated $1 billion for the rights to open the gallery.
The Louvre has an educational museum tailored for children that includes a map where Qatar is totally omitted.
The Washington Institute’s Simon Henderson wrote, “In the children’s section of Abu Dhabi’s new flagship Louvre Museum, a map of the southern Gulf completely omits the Qatari peninsula – a geographical deletion that is probably incompatible with France’s agreement to let Abu Dhabi use the Louvre’s name.”
The chairperson of Qatar Museum, Sheikha al Mayassa bint Hamad, tweeted, “Throughout history museums were a source of reference. People would visit to acquire knowledge and learn about world cultures through the exploration of objects on display. Although the notion of museums is a new one to Abu Dhabi, surely the @MuseeLouvre is not okay with this?”
The Gulf crisis began in June, as a coalition of states led by Saudi Arabia and the UAE instigated a blockade of Qatar, blaming it for supporting terrorism, which Qatar denies.