Trump offers to help resolve Gulf crisis

GULF-QATAR

Trump offers to help resolve Gulf crisis

The main question is to what extent Saudi will succeed in pressuring the Qatari royal family to turn against the emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, said Mokhtar Awad, a research fellow at George Washington University's program on extremism. They said they would take a hard line on funding... "Others must do more to eliminate support for violent extremists" within their own borders, Tillerson said, calling for "progress toward eliminating all forms of support for terrorism: military, financial, moral or ideological".

Doha insisted the sanctions, which include the Gulf states severing air, land and sea links with Qatar, "will not affect the daily life of citizens and residents".

"Turkish troops are coming to Qatar for the sake of the securıty of the entire region", Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani told the press on Thursday, as cited by Hurriyet.

Qatar Airways said on Wednesday that it chartered four flights to return passengers from Saudi Arabia to Doha via Kuwait or Oman, which haven't cut ties.

"We are not ready to surrender, and will never be ready to surrender, the independence of our foreign policy", he said, warning that the dispute threatened the stability of the region.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday Turkey would stand by Qatar amid a diplomatic row engulfing the Gulf state, APA reports quoting Anadolu Agency. Qatar's continued support of terror groups led to the crisis.

"The nation of Qatar, unfortunately, has historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high level", he said. Qatar has denied the allegations.

President Trump hammered the tiny nation of Qatar, a vital Middle Eastern ally of the United States, for its history of funding terror groups, even as a diplomatic blockade of the gas-rich country by other Arab States is hindering USA military operations against ISIS fighters in Iraq and Syria.

Trump's broadside Tuesday against Qatar, which plays a major role in US military efforts in the Mideast, arrived as an early-morning shock to USA officials.

But in Germany, Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer pointed out that Trump's words differed substantially from those of State Department and Pentagon officials.

Both Qatar and the USA sought to show the rift wasn't affecting military cooperation.

The worst crisis in decades among the Gulf's Arab monarchies intensified on Wednesday, with a Saudi-led alliance imposing more punitive sanctions against Qatar and a senior UAE official playing down the chances of a quick diplomatic resolution.

The call comes the day after Trump spoke by phone about the crisis with Saudi Arabia's King Salman. He called on Qatar "to be responsive to the concerns of its neighbors".

Other countries also are offering to intervene, and it's not clear if Trump will end up as the primary mediator. The potential for a coup makes it unlikely the Qatari emir would travel so far from home, especially as its adversaries hint that regime change would be welcome.

"I decided, along with secretary of state Rex Tillerson, our great generals and military people, the time had come to call on Qatar to end its funding, they have to end that funding and its extremist ideology", Trump said.

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