Monday, June 5, 2023

UAE and Egpyt commend Saudi Arabia’s efforts to resolve Gulf crisis with Qatar | Middle East

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Amid signs that Qatar’s three-year blockade could end soon, Abu Dhabi and Cairo say they support the rapprochement.

Officials from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Egypt have hailed recent efforts to end the three-year blockade of Gulf neighbor Qatar as the siege may soon end.

The UAE appreciates the efforts of Kuwait and the United States to strengthen Arab unity in the Gulf, a senior UAE official said on Tuesday in reference to the blockade of Qatar.

Kuwait and Saudi Arabia on Friday said progress had been made in resolving the dispute which has seen Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt sever diplomatic, trade and tourism ties with Qatar since mid-2017.

In the UAE’s first public comment on recent developments, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash also praised Riyadh’s “good efforts on behalf of the four states,” adding that the UAE looked forward to a “successful” Arab Gulf summit, expected to take place this month.

“The UAE appreciates the efforts of sister Kuwait and the US efforts to build solidarity in the Arab Gulf,” Gargash said on Twitter.

A spokesperson for the Egyptian Foreign Ministry said in a statement Tuesday that Cairo hoped the efforts would lead to a “comprehensive solution that addresses all the causes of the crisis and guarantees serious and strict engagement.”

The Emir of Qatar has not attended the annual Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit since 2017, although his prime minister was present at last year’s rally, which made no public mention of the dispute .

The Kuwaiti and Saudi Arabian foreign ministers did not provide specific details on recent progress, but a source in Washington told Reuters news agency that an agreement in principle had been reached between the parts and that it could be signed in a few weeks.

Analysts said any breakthrough would likely extend only to Riyadh-Doha links, with the exception of Abu Dhabi, which has been Qatar’s most vocal critic since the crisis began.

However, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud said on Saturday that a resolution was in sight with all the nations involved “on board” and a final agreement expected soon.

All the countries concerned are allies of the United States. Qatar is home to the largest US military base in the region, Bahrain is home to the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet, and Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are home to US troops.

Boycotting countries accuse Qatar of pursuing an independent foreign policy and have issued 13 demands, including loosening ties with Iran, a regional rival, closing a Turkish military base in the Gulf state and shutting down Al Jazeera Media Network.

Doha has vowed to maintain its policies and has been reluctant to respond to all requests undermine its sovereignty.


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