A group of five students from Qatar will travel to Scotland to participate in the upcoming World School Debating Championships (WSDC), where they hope to contribute to the continued development of debate in Qatar. Yousef Fakhroo, Majid al-Ansari, Khalid al-Khulaifi, Reem Hani Safar and Safa Kashaf will be representing Qatar in the upcoming tournament, and make up one of the three Arab teams in the competition.
The tournament, which will be run from August 16 to 26 at Dundee University, will see Team Qatar facing 280 fellow debaters from nearly 50 countries.
Participation in the event is the next step in the efforts of QatarDebate, who have been working to promote the culture of debate throughout local schools and universities.
The team recently returned from Slovenia, where its members took part in an academy and competition that saw them win first place, as well as winning awards for the first, second and seventh best speakers at the event.
This outstanding performance has brought a new level of excitement and expectation to the team, and they are hoping to experience further success in Scotland.
The five were selected from an initial group of 80 students in January this year, and will now represent Qatar at the most prestigious international debating competition.
The tournament will see the team participating in eight opening round debates. The teams have been notified of the motions in four of the debates.
Qatar will be proposing two motions and opposing the other two.
These debates will see them arguing for the legalisation of the sale of human organs, and for offering dictators immunity in return for leaving power, as well as opposing motions on the virtues of universal primary education and the ability of women to achieve equality under a secular government.
The team members will then take part in four impromptu debates.
They have thus been gathering as much information as possible related to current events around the world.
The WSDC was hosted in Qatar last year.
Holding the WSDC in Qatar added significant impetus to QatarDebate's efforts to promote debate in Qatar, and the team will be hoping that their performance in Scotland will offer similar encouragement.
QatarDebate executive director Hayat Maarafi expressed her pride at the efforts of the students so far, describing them as "heroes" and "ambassadors for Qatar".
"They have been working so hard already, and I trust that they will do their best to represent themselves and their country in Scotland," she said, adding: "They have shown their commitment so far, and I am sure they will do well."
Team coach Madeline Hall described the "journey" upon which the team have already embarked, and expressed her hope that their efforts in Scotland will reflect their efforts so far, which have already brought them a pleasing level of success.
Qatar will face Serbia, New Zealand, Greece, Chile, the Netherlands, Thailand, Estonia and China in the preliminary rounds of the competition
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