QATAR SAYS KUWAIT IS TRYING TO MEDIATE, SOLVE DIPLOMATIC RIFT

Kuwait is trying to mediate at resolving diplomatic and commercial ties between Qatar and Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain which on Monday, 5th of June, 2017, severed all ties with Qatar accusing the later for supporting terrorists and Iran. Recent to join the lists were Yemen, Maldives and Libya.

Biggest Diplomatic Crisis

It is by and far the biggest diplomatic crisis to have struck the Persian Gulf since the 1991 war led by the U.S with Iraq and pits several nations against Qatar which is also home to 10,000 odd American military troops and is also a major military base.

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Image: breakingnewspak.com

Allegations

The move of boycotting the diplomatic ties came just a couple of weeks after the U.S President Donald Trump made a visit to Saudi Arabia and promised to improve the relations between Riyadh and Cairo in an effort to combat terrorism and to contain Iran. Saudi Arabia accused that Qatar was embracing various terrorists and sectarian groups including the Muslim Brotherhood, Al-Qaeda, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and other armed groups in the Eastern Iran which aimed at destabilizing the region. Whereas Egypt’s Foreign Ministry made accusations that Qatar was taking an antagonist approach towards Cairo and that all attempts made by Egypt to stop Qatar from supporting terrorist groups have failed. Qatar said these allegations were baseless and has long denied funding extremists.

Directives Issued

The Gulf countries have ordered their citizens to evacuate from Qatar and have given Qataris abroad a time of 14 days to return home. Also directives were issued that they would eject diplomats of Qatar. Sanctions include cutting all the transport links including airspace and maritime territories as well as closing borders. Doha-based satellite news network Al-Jazeera has reported stranded trucks carrying food have started lining up on the Saudi side of the border. Further the Qatar stock- exchange took a drastic hit and fell more than 7% in trading on Monday.

Qatar Airways, one of the region’s most important and most frequently used long-haul carriers, has suspended all flights to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain until further directions. Saudi Arabia has revoked the Airway’s operating license and any Qatari-flagged shipping vessel has been barred from docking.

Kuwait’s Involvement

Kuwait’s ruler, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, had suggested Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Qatar’s ruling emir, to hold off on giving a speech about the crisis late on Tuesday night. Many analysts are of the opinion that Kuwait’s involvement is due to the fact that Kuwait and Oman fear that these diplomatic tensions could challenge the interests of all the six members of the GCC and a potential breakup of the GCC if the tensions are not resolved at the earliest.