Lunedi, 20 Mag, 2019

Trump eases Qatar critique, offers to mediate Gulf spat

Trump eases Qatar critique, offers to mediate Gulf spat Trump eases Qatar critique, offers to mediate Gulf spat
Parmenio Sano | 11 Giugno, 2017, 07:04

The worldwide community has been striving to mediate the crisis among the countries concerned since the escalating tensions between Qatar and its fellow Arab nations culminated when Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt, Libya and Yemen abruptly announced to sever diplomatic ties with the Gulf gas-rich state, accusing it of supporting terrorism and interfering with internal affairs.

In his second intervention in the crisis in as many days, Trump urged action against terrorism in a call with Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani, a White House statement said.

This week a diplomatic crisis hit the Middle East as several countries (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Yemen and Maldives) cut ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorist groups. Qatar's USA ambassador, Meshal bin Hamad Al Thani, told The Associated Press his country is counting on Washington to persuade Saudi Arabia and others to back down.

The media rights group, also known as RSF, said Al Jazeera was a "collateral victim of (the) diplomatic offensive against Qatar", criticising Riyadh's decision to close Al Jazeera's office and revoke its operating licence.

Qatar's Foreign Minister HE Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani told the broadcaster that the Federal Bureau of Investigation has confirmed the hack and the planting of fake news.

Kuwait is leading efforts to find a mediated solution. The Arab countries aren't just recalling diplomats; they're also closing airspace to Qatar and restricting access by sea.

The West African country of Mauritania, a member of the Arab League, severed ties with Qatar on Tuesday over allegations it "supports terrorists", the state news agency reported, and OPEC member Gabon also condemned the small Gulf Arab state.


Qatar has released an initial report into the alleged hack of its state-run news agency, an incident which helped spark a diplomatic crisis between the energy-rich country and Arab nations.

Trump's Tuesday tweet - in which he said "all reference was pointing to Qatar" as a financer of extremism - was especially surprising given Qatar's role as host of the largest U.S. airbase in the Middle East. In a statement issued by the Egyptian presidency, they gave no sign they were ready to compromise.

Meanwhile, American news media today claimed that United States intelligence believes Russian hackers were responsible for the Qatar News Agency hack. And a State Department official said an approved but pending sale of F-15 fighter planes to Qatar hasn't been affected.

The Saudi-owned Al Arabiya carried a report titled "Qatari Emir: Doha has "tensions" with the Donald Trump administration" that quoted Al-Thani as saying, "There is no wisdom in harboring hostility toward Iran" and that Qatar's relations with Israel are "good". A day earlier, Trump discussed the crisis with King Salman of Saudi Arabia, which is leading the anti-Qatar campaign.

Other countries also are offering to intervene, and it's not clear if Trump will end up as the primary mediator.

A White House summit seemed an unlikely possibility.

The Qatari Interior Ministry said late Wednesday that the website of the Qatar News Agency was initially hacked in April with "high techniques and innovative methods".

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