French FM urges de-escalation in Gulf crisis


The fake statements, which spoke favorably of Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah, as well as of relations with Israel, provoke the ire of a number of Gulf states as well as Egypt, and Qatar was effectively cut off from the Arabian Peninsula with a blockade.

The countries say a pact the Gulf nation signed with the U.S. last week to disable the flow of money to terrorist groups isn't enough to end the rift, and insisted their demands that Qatar change its policies be met in full.

Speaking at a forum in London, Anwar Gargash also said the UAE would not escalate its boycott by asking companies to choose between doing business with it or with Qatar.

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said Qatar's response to the bloc's conditions had "no substance" and "reflects a lack of understanding of the gravity of the situation". Doha denies the charges.

It seems Saudi Arabia and its allies have realized that they've been had because Washington first signed a $110-billion arms sales deal with Saudi Arabia and, in return, ostensibly condemned Qatar's move, and at the same time signed a $12-billion military agreement with Doha.

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The foreign minister affirmed Qatar welcomes the efforts of the France in supporting Kuwaiti mediation and finding a solution based on the sovereignty of states and global law.

He pointed out that the global community has refused Qatar's support of terrorism and extremism, and hosting people wanted in this regard.

The region's royal families detest the sort of critical scrutiny that is the stock in trade of news organizations like Al-Jazeera, and fear the anti-monarchical populism of groups like the Muslim Brotherhood.

President Trump has prioritized improving relations with Saudi Arabia but not with Qatar.

The countries issued the 13-point list of demands on June 22, giving Qatar 10 days to respond.

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French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said in Doha on Saturday that Paris wants to assist Kuwait-led mediation on the crisis between Qatar and four other Arab states.

Saudi Arabia and its allies believe the U.S. has mostly sided with Qatar in the current crisis rather than backing them.

Yousef al-Otaiba, the UAE ambassador to Washington, said in a statement that his country "had no role whatsoever in the alleged hacking", describing the article as "false", the Post said. The UN meanwhile said its under-secretary general for political affairs, Jeffrey Feltman, was in Kuwait for talks on ending the dispute. "We are after a change of behaviour", Gargash said.

"It is now a matter of the parties entering into negotiations", he added.

United States officials claim the UAE is behind the hacking of Qatar's news agency in May which sparked a diplomatic crisis. We need to concert efforts between different countries and this should not be in the hands and shoulders of one country only. Qatar says the allegations are based on lies.

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Federation Internationale de Football Association will want to take a decision on the merits of Qatar's ability to deliver a safe, secure and well managed World Cup rather than based on political arguments, many of which have yet to be substantiated.