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Hundreds of security firms vie for contracts at Qatar convention

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Milipol Qatar hosts hundreds of companies hoping to sign defence and intelligence contracts for World Cup 2022.

Doha, Qatar - More than 200 defence and intelligence companies from 24 countries displayed advanced technological solutions to security threats aiming to sign contracts with this Gulf state ahead of World Cup 2022.

With Qatar making logistical and security preparations for the football tournament, a delegation from Russia - the host nation of this year's World Cup - had the most recent logistical and security lessons to share during the three-day Milipol Qatar 2018 event, which started on Monday.

Advice included hiring and training tens of thousands of guards who are not military or security forces, but another layer of security specialised in managing large crowds.

Major-General Nasser bin Fahad Al Thani, president of Milipol Qatar, said his country has signed several contracts with international contractors worth tens of millions of dollars to enhance technological infrastructure and computer systems.

Lieutenant-Colonel Hamad al-Kubaisi, spokesman for Qatar's Internal Security Forces, told Al Jazeera Qatar's well-trained security apparatus will make the World Cup 2022 a successful and safe tournament for the Gulf nation's guests.

"Despite the regional issues facing Qatar today, we will be able to pull off a very successful World Cup with the help of our partners from around the world," Kubaisi said.

OpenWorks, a British company, introduced an integrated security system that captures and disables small drones as they fly.

The system, called SkyWall, operates much like a small shoulder-held rocket launcher - or a rocket-propelled grenade - but instead of firing an explosive charge, uses compressed air to launch a projectile that fires a specifically designed "drone entangling" net made from Kevlar material up to the drone.

The SkyWall system is designed to deal with threats coming from small drones that weigh less than 20kg, which are typically classified by the military as Class 1 drones.

One of its applications is to work as a security component of wider security apparatus tasked with protecting heads of states and other VIPs.

James Cross, an OpenWorks official, told Al Jazeera the proliferation of small drones around the world will redefine the nature of security organisations, and different aspects of security must work in tandem to counter threats from the sky.

"Our system operates as an integrated element of the security and intelligence apparatus to counter threats from drones and provides an added layer of protection," said Cross.

Another British company, Basis Technology, offered security and intelligence multi-language information extraction solutions with deeper applications in the civilian and military-intelligence applications.

On Monday, the first day of the convention, Al Thani announced the signing of several contracts with European companies to develop and update the interior ministry's e-passport and Tetra communication systems.


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