Qatar-Gulf crisis: Kuwait, Turkey’s Erdogan mediate


On May 23 Online footage of Qatari state television’s nightly newscast from Tuesday showing clips of Sheikh Tamim at the ceremony with the anchor not mentioning the comments. The remarks included calling Hamas “the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people,” as well as saying Qatar had “strong relations” with Iran and the United States.

Further said “Iran represents a regional and Islamic power that cannot be ignored and it is unwise to face up against it,” the ticker read at one point. “It is a big power in the stabilization of the region.”This sparked a series of diplomatic breakdowns between the GCC countries. Qatar’s government claimed its official websites had been hacked and categorically denied in which the country’s leader expressed support for Iran.

The fake article quoted Sheikh Tamim as calling Iran an “Islamic power” and saying Qatar’s relations with Israel were “good” during a military ceremony.

Doha denied all the comments and said it was the victim of a “shameful cybercrime.”

The latest developments include severing of diplomatic ties between four Gulf states and Qatar, an embargo imposed on Qatar, with air, sea and land borders shut down, and Qatari diplomats and residents expelled from those Gulf countries.Gulf Cooperation Councilis a political and economic alliance of countries in the Arabian peninsula,established in 1981 and its aim is to enhance cooperation and close relations among its members. These are Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain have broken off diplomatic relations and all land sea and air contacts with fellow Gulf Arab state Qatar over terrorism and extremism.

Riyadh has accused its fellow Gulf Arab state of backing terrorism and extremism while Bahrain has charged Qatar of interfering in Bahrain’s internal affairs.

Saudi Arabia has thus decided to sever diplomatic and consular relations with Qatar “proceeding from the exercise of its sovereign right guaranteed by international law and the protection of national security from the dangers of terrorism and extremism.”

The UAE and Saudi Arabia gave Qatari citizens who are residents in or visiting the UAE two weeks to depart. They have also ordered their citizens in Qatar to return.

Bahrain’s foreign affairs ministry issued a statement that it would withdraw its diplomatic mission from the Qatari capital of Doha within 48 hours and that all Qatari diplomats should leave Bahrain within the same period.


The ministry’s statement said Qatari citizens needed to leave Bahrain within two weeks and that air and sea traffic between the two countries would be halted. It wasn’t immediately clear how that would affect Qatar Airways, one of the region’s major long-haul carriers.

Qatar is home to the sprawling al-Udeid Air Base, which is home to the US military’s Central Command and some 10,000 American troops and it is not sure what whether U.S. base in Qatar will be affected or not.

Western officials have also accused Qatar of allowing funding of Sunni extremists like Al-Qaida’s branch in Syria. The snapping of the Saudi-led Arab coalition ties with fellow Gulf Arab state Qatar was due to the news that was carried by Qatar’s news agency which Doha alleged to have been hacked.

Qatar’s emir statement, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani has criticised U.S. President Donald Trump and described Iran as a force for stability in the region and threatened to withdraw ambassadors from a range of Middle Eastern countries including Saudi Arabia.

Kuwait Emir in talks with Saudis, Qataris
Kuwaiti Emir,Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, Gulf crisis, Qatar, Prince Khaled al-Faisal,Saudi King Salman, Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan

In an effort to resolve the Gulf crisis, Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah held talks with Saudi envoy and made a phone call  to Qatar’s ruler after some of the countries severed diplomatic relations with Qatar over individual national security concerns.

It is pertinent to mention that the Kuwaiti ruler played a substantial role in a similar crisis in 2014 that eventually resolved the dispute between Qatar and its neighbours and now, again Kuwait is trying to sort out the Gulf rift, a member of the six-nation GCC alliance, did not join other states in severing ties with Qatar.

Prince Khaled al-Faisal, an adviser to Saudi King Salman and the governor of Mecca, delivered a verbal message to Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al-Sabah dealing with “bilateral relations and the latest regional and international developments”, local news reported.But the content of the message was not informed to the media.

This situation is a repeat of 2014, when several Gulf countries recalled their Ambassadors from Doha over its support for Muslim Brotherhood.

Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah then made a call to Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani and “urged him for restraint and not to take any measure that could escalate” the situation.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has also called for dialogue and negotiation among members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to ease the unprecedented diplomatic crisis that has erupted after some of the countries severed diplomatic relations with Qatar over individual national security concerns.

Erdogan’s spokesman Ibrahim Kalin reiterated Turkey’s sadness over the incident, and said it stood ready help if needed.

Erdogan made phone calls to Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, and King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia.

arti bali

By : Arti Bali

Senior Journalist

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