Arab bloc voices 'surprise' over Qatari 'intransigence'

Earlier this week, Doha rejected bloc’s 13-point list of demands, describing them as an affront to Qatar's sovereignty

Arab bloc voices 'surprise' over Qatari 'intransigence'

World Bulletin / News Desk

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt on Friday expressed their “great surprise” over the Qatari government's “unjustified refusal” to meet their 13-point list of demands.

In a joint statement, the four countries -- which joined forces last month to impose an embargo on Qatar -- vowed to take additional measures against Doha “at the appropriate time”.

The four-nation bloc issued the statement after receiving Qatar’s official reply to its demands via Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber Al Sabah -- who has tried to mediate the crisis -- earlier this week.

It went on to describe Doha’s apparent refusal to meet its demands, which include calls to shut down Doha-based news broadcaster Al Jazeera, as “intransigence”.

“The intransigence of the Qatari government and its rejection of our demands reflects the extent to which it [i.e., Doha] is linked to terrorist organizations and continues to try and sabotage and undermine the security and stability of the Gulf and the region and to harm the interests of the region’s people, including the brotherly people of Qatar itself,” the statement read.

On Wednesday, Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani appeared to reject the list of demands, which he said were tantamount to calls for Doha to “surrender its sovereignty”.

The ongoing crisis in inter-Arab relations climaxed on June 5, when Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Egypt and Yemen all abruptly cut diplomatic relations with Doha, accusing it of meddling in their domestic affairs and supporting terrorist groups.

Mauritania followed suit shortly afterward, while Jordan downgraded its diplomatic representation in Doha.

Saudi Arabia also sealed its land border with Qatar, geographically isolating the tiny Gulf nation.

Doha, for its part, strenuously denies that it is a supporter of terrorism, describing the moves to isolate it as “unjustified” and in breach of international law.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 07 Temmuz 2017, 15:13