Pluteos AG hired by UAE to run influence campaign against Qatar

Cyber Warfare Asia
2 min readJan 28, 2021

Recent news states that Swiss corporate intelligence firm Pluteos AG is operating a multi-million dollar contract to coordinate influence campaigns in Europe against Qatar for the UAE, which continues to accuse its neighbour of supporting the Muslim Brotherhood.

Pluteos AG was founded by financier Samuel Danilowitsch and was chaired by August Hanning, the former head of the BND, Germany’s external intelligence service, and its board of directors includes Hans Wegmueller, who used to head Switzerland’s Strategic Intelligence Service (SIS) and Thorseten Mehles, the former head of Germany’s first private investigation company, Prevent AG.

Similarly, Qatar was also active in running influential campaigns against its enemies particularly on cases involving the International Football Federation Association (FIFA) and the attack of pro-Emirati journalist and lobbyists such as Ghanem Nuseibeh’s Cornerstone Global with the help of Italian consultant-journalist Paolo Fusi.

Samuel Danilowitsch

Pluteos and Abu Dhabi are also connected through the aircraft integration company Aquila Aerospace. Aquila is headed by prominent new UAE defence industry player Homaid al Shemmari a former UAE Air Force colonel and also oversees some of the most strategic parts of the UAE’s defence apparatus, such as the drone company Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments. According to some sources, Aquila is also represented commercially by the Swiss financier Samuel Danilowitsch, the head of the corporate intelligence firm Pluteos AG.

The Swiss government had made certain policies for maintaining its neutrality in Article 4. The Article’s line 9a refers to corporate intelligence firm states that the department must ensure that even activities carried out by Swiss-based firms in foreign countries comply with Swiss security and foreign policy rules under the watchful eye of the Private Security Services Section (SSSP), headed by Fulvio Massard, which is overseen by the ministry of foreign affairs (DFAE). This case seems like a clear violation.

Moreover, it is clear from the above article that Middle East firms are taking help from foreign firms to run influence campaigns against each other to fulfill their nation’s interest. It has now become a common practice of warfare leaving audience at their mercy internationally.



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