World Bulletin / News Desk
The coalition said the move was due to Qatar’s “practices that strengthen terrorism and its support to [terrorist] organizations in Yemen, including al-Qaeda and ISIL,” according to a statement cited by Saudi Arabia’s official SPA news agency.
It said Doha was dealing with rebel militias in Yemen “in contravention of the coalition’s objectives, which mainly are the fight against terrorism”.
Qatar is a member of the coalition, which launched an air campaign in 2015 against Houthi rebels, who overran the capital Sanaa and other Yemeni provinces in 2014.
The move came shortly after Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Yemen severed diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism.
Qatar’s Foreign Ministry, for its part, regretted the decision to cut relations with Doha, saying the move was “unjustified” and was based on “claims and groundless allegations”.
The new escalation came two weeks after the website of Qatar’s official news agency was allegedly hacked by unknown individuals who reportedly published statements falsely attributed to its emir, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad al-Thani.
The incident triggered a diplomatic row between Qatar and its neighbors, the UAE and Saudi Arabia.