Qatar Airways urges United Nations action against Gulf boycott

Geneva Matthews
June 14, 2017

But al Thani disputed that Monday, saying that "if the problem is Iran, why have those measures been taken against Qatar, why not taken against Iran?"

TRT World's Nicole Johnston has more from Doha.

Qatar has been accused by Saudi Arabia and the UAE of supporting terrorism, claims that the tiny state has rejected in the strongest terms.

"We're extremely comfortable with our positions, our investments and liquidity in our systems", he said, adding that he sees no need for the government to step into the market and buy bonds. "It looks as if it is the same reason as before - a dislike of our policy towards Egypt - but no one has the right to impose a foreign policy on a sovereign state". Kuwait has been involved in trying to mediate the dispute.

The president said it appears some countries have already made a decision to hand down the death penalty to Qatar and urged Saudi Arabia to reconsider the harsh steps against the small Gulf country.

"I personally lived through the first building blocks of this council almost four decades ago, so it is not easy for someone like me as a leader to stand silent without doing everything I can to bring brothers back together".

Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates cut diplomatic ties with Qatar last week.

Qatar is a partner of the United Kingdom in the fight against terrorism but they urgently need to do more to address support for extremist groups, building on the steps they have already taken to tackle funding to those groups.

"If Qatar was to do anything like that, in Dubai the lights would probably go off", said Christopher Davidson, a professor of Middle East politics at Durham University in Britain. "We are stopping the funding of terrorism", he said during a photo call with cabinet officials. "We're not going to specify the nature of those conversations". The two countries maintain diplomatic relations - a source of contention for Saudi Arabia, which views Iran as its regional foe and has worked to line up allied Sunni Arab states against it.

Qatar announced Monday that it had launched direct shipping services to ports in Oman in a bid to bypass the Gulf "blockade".

Thinking of wearing your Barcelona football shirt on holidays to Saudi Arabia anytime soon?

Analysts estimate that at least 40% of Qatar's food supplies are transported across its land border with Saudi Arabia, which was closed last week.

Qatar, which imported 80 per cent of its food from bigger Gulf Arab neighbours before the diplomatic shutdown, has also been talking to Iran and Turkey to secure food and water.

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