Qatar FM: Blockade Is Result of Saudi Aggression

It's not fair to blame this conflict on Qatar

Earlier this year, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt isolated Qatar diplomatically and economically after claiming it supports terrorist groups and implements policies that could jeopardise the equilibrium of the region.

The bloc has imposed limited sanctions on the small emirate after accusing the country "of supporting terrorism", and demanding among other things that the Al Jazeera TV network based in the Qatari capital Doha be closed down, that Qatar rethink its ties with Iran and that Turkey's military base in the country be closed.

"They are constrained in what escalation measures they can take and they're facing an global community that prefers some kind of negotiated settlement, which they're not really interested in, " Griffiths said.

"The response the four states got was overall negative and lacked any content", Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said, reading out a joint statement after the meeting.

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the UAE severed ties with Qatar last month.

The comments are coming a day after the expiration of a 48-hour deadline extension recommended by Kuwait to allow Qatar comply with set demands tabled before it which Doha has rejected.

"Clearly the blockading countries did not submit their demands with the expectation that they would provide a framework for resolving their differences with Qatar", he said in his address to the think tank.

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The four Arab states stopped short of announcing new sanctions but Jubeir said they would "take steps at the appropriate time".

Shoukri said the ministers discussed Qatar's response and "possible future actions", which will aim at "fighting terrorism".

Predictably the Saudi embassy in London categorically denied the claim but the accusation comes at a time when United Kingdom ministers are under public pressure to finalise their own report on UK-based Islamist groups, following a series of deadly bomb blasts carried out by religious extremists in the country.

He added that economic boycott against Qatar will remain until the country changes its policies for the better.

The quartet's foreign ministers met in Cairo on Wednesday evening and issued a press statement saying that the quartet's stance against the tiny Gulf state rested on six principles, focusing primarily on combating extremism and non-intervention. "We are states of sovereignties and we have the right to take any measures in line with worldwide law".

The nations could impose financial sanctions or force Qatar out of the Gulf Cooperation Council, a regional body known as the GCC that serves as a counterbalance to Iran.

US President Donald Trump spoke with the Egyptian President, Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, on Wednesday, "urging all parties to negotiate constructively to resolve the dispute".

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