UAE FM warns Qatar is 'undermining' GCC allies


US intelligence officials told the Washington Post that the United Arab Emirates was behind the hacking of a Qatari state news agency that first sparked the crisis.

While the statements attributed to Qatar's emir sparked the current crisis, Qatar has been at odds with the other conservative monarchies in the Gulf for many years.

The article said officials became aware last week that newly analyzed information gathered by USA intelligence agencies suggested that senior members of the UAE government discussed the plan and its implementation. The officials said it isn't clear whether the UAE carried out the hack itself or got someone else to do it.

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Among the false social media posts published during the hack were some made in the name of the Emir of Qatar, in which he appeared to make disparaging remarks about US President Donald Trump, praised Gaza's Hamas leaders and expressed support for Iran as an "Islamic power".

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt imposed sanctions on Qatar on June 5, cutting diplomatic and transport ties with the country due to its support for and financing of terrorism. Yousef al-Otaiba, the UAE ambassador to the United States, called the Post article "false" in a statement.

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. "What is true is Qatar's behavior". Funding, supporting, and enabling extremists from the Taliban to Hamas & Qadafi. Though Qatar immediately took down the quotes and insisted they were the result of a hack, the comments nevertheless incensed the country's neighbors and ended up serving as a pretext for their decision to sever diplomatic and economic ties with Qatar weeks later.

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The QNA (Qatar News Agency) hack led to a major regional upheaval, straining Qatar's relations with its neighbours. "Inciting violence, encouraging radicalisation, and undermining the stability of its neighbours", the statement said.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation was previously known to be working with Qatar to probe the hacking.

"Tillerson's spokesperson has said that [Qatar-Gulf crisis negotiations] may be a long process to find any sort of common ground in resolving this conflict", said Zhou-Castro of Al Jazeera. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson shuttled around the region last week, but but returned home without a breakthrough.

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