Thursday, 17 October 2019
Latest news
Main » This Saudi-Qatari rift complicates America's broader fight against terror

This Saudi-Qatari rift complicates America's broader fight against terror

08 June 2017

Moscow on Wednesday, June 7 dismissed allegations that Russian hackers helped spark the diplomatic crisis around Qatar, after CNN reported that USA officials believed they planted a false news story, Reuters says.

One of the factors at play here may also be Qatar's close relations with Iran; it certainly contributes to the timing of the coordinated withdrawal from diplomacy across nations.

His posts came as Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain accused Qatar of supporting terrorism and cut diplomatic ties with the Gulf state, which hosts a major US military base. The Tuesday announcement could have significant consequences for everything from the fight against terrorism to oil prices, and if you're wondering just what is going on in Qatar, it's important to first understand the complex relations between the Gulf countries. Qatar is home to the largest US military base in the United States, and it could pretty quickly decide that that no longer serves in its interests.

US President Donald Trump has called the king of Saudi Arabia to urge Gulf unity amid an escalating dispute over Qatar's alleged support for militants.

President Donald Trump is backing Saudi Arabia and other Mideast nations in taking what he says is a "hardline" on Qatar, and said perhaps the rift will be "the beginning of the end to the horror of terrorism".

Asked about Trump's policies in the Middle East, Gabriel said Germany did not support a policy of "pure confrontation" against Iran.

More news: Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) Receives An Update From Brokers

"Such a Trumpification of relations with one another is particularly risky in a region that is already rife with crises", he told the newspaper, in an apparent reference to what critics say is the increasingly divisive rhetoric seen since the election of U.S. President Donald Trump a year ago.

Energy-rich Qatar has long had strained ties with its neighbours but the move by Riyadh and its supporters raised fears of more volatility in the region.

Sheikh Saif Bin Ahmed Al-Thani, director of the Qatari Government Communications Office, confirmed that Qatar's Ministry of Interior is working with the FBI and the United Kingdom's National Crime Agency on the ongoing hacking investigation of the Qatar News Agency.

Qatar has forged regional alliances independently of its fellow GCC states, drawing accusations from Saudi Arabia and its allies of serving Iranian interests.

Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, says the USA continues to be grateful to the Qataris for their longstanding support of the American presence and enduring commitment to regional security. He said there were enough grain supplies for four weeks and Qatar also had large strategic food reserves.

"Russian-Qatari cooperation, primarily in the trade, economic and investment areas, was discussed, and the results of the meeting of the bilateral Intergovernmental Commission in April 2017 were highly praised", the Kremlin said, Washington Examiner reported.

More news: IOS 11 Finally Makes the iPad a Capable Computer

Qatar is home to the biggest U.S. airbase in the Middle East, Al-Udeid, where some 10,000 military personnel are stationed. "We appreciate the role they are playing in trying to de-escalate it". Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain suspended diplomatic ties with Qatar, which is pulling its troops from the Saudi-led Yemen war.

Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies may have felt emboldened by Trump's visit, which saw the new president clearly align USA interests with Riyadh and lash out at Iran.

The required steps, al-Jubeir said, included ending support for Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood - a policy which he said was undermining the Palestinian Authority and Egypt.

Qatar long has denied funding extremists, though Western officials have accused it of allowing or even encouraging funding of Sunni extremists like al-Qaida's branch in Syria, once known as the Nusra Front.

"We are willing to sit and talk", Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani told CNN late on Tuesday.

It's a strategy shared by other Persian Gulf countries seeking to win USA support - including Saudi Arabia.

More news: How to watch James Comey's testimony live Thursday