Five countries cut ties with Qatar over 'terrorism' support

James Marshall
June 5, 2017

Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates all announced they would withdraw their diplomatic staff from Qatar, a gas-rich nation that will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup and is home to a major USA. military base.

West Texas Intermediate crude futures for July delivery were seen more than 1.2% higher at $48.15 while Brent contracts for the same month, were seen 1.25% higher at $50.37 each. "This by itself is a violation of its (Qatar's) sovereignty as a state".

The Qatari News Agency report claimed the small Persian Gulf nation had withdrawn its ambassadors from Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and the U.A.E. because of "tension" with the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump.

A statement released on Saudi Arabian state controlled news agency, SPA, accused Doha of backing militant groups and spreading violent ideology in a clear reference to Qatar's state-controlled cable news channel, Al Jazeera. Qatari nationals have been given two weeks notice to leave the UAE. Saudi is accusing the other country of collaborating with Iranian-backed militias, which Qatar said was "unjustified" and has "no basis".

Qatar is going to host the FIFA World Cup 2022 and is a member of US-led coalition for defeating the Islamic State (IS) group.

It has been criticised in some quarters for its support of rebel groups fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and Qatari individuals have also been sanctioned by the US Treasury for terror-funding activities. They have also announced that Qatar's envoys will be asked to leave the respective countries.

Etihad Airways, the UAE's flag carrier, said it would suspend flights to and from Qatar beginning Tuesday morning.

Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.

The most recent dispute appeared to surface after what Qatar said were fake remarks published by hackers on the official Qatar News Agency on May 24.

At the summit, Saudi Arabia on behalf of all the guests condemned Iran for its hostile policies and threatened with an adequate response.

The Qatari foreign affairs ministry insists there is "no legitimate justification" for the countries' decision, calling it a "violation of its sovereignty" - but the move is likely to cause further problems and embarrassment for Federation Internationale de Football Association.

Gulf Arab states and Egypt have long resented Qatar's support for Islamists, especially the Muslim Brotherhood which they regard as a unsafe political enemy. Central Command officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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