Qatar Crisis: Arab Boycott to Remain in Place After Doha Rejects Demands

Further steps against Qatar will be taken at the appropriate time and will be in line with international law, says Saudi FM

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Foreign Ministers of the countries involved in the Gulf crisis meet in Cairo, Egypt, on July 5, 2017.
Foreign Ministers of the countries involved in the Gulf crisis meet in Cairo, Egypt, on July 5, 2017.Credit: POOL/REUTERS

Four Arab nations seeking to isolate Qatar for its alleged support for terrorism have issued a statement saying that Doha's response to their demands to end the crisis was "not serious."

The four countries issued a 13-point list of demands last month, giving Qatar 10 days to comply. They later extended the deadline by another 48 hours at the request of Kuwait, which has acted as a mediator. That deadline expired early Wednesday.

Wednesday's statement came after foreign ministers from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain — the Arab states involved in the dispute with Qatar — met in Egypt's capital after receiving Doha's response to their list of demands.

The Arab countries' demands include that their Persian Gulf neighbor shutter Al-Jazeera, cut back diplomatic ties to Iran and sever all ties with the Muslim Brotherhood. They also demanded an end to Turkey’s military presence in Qatar.

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir said that "more steps will be taken against Qatar following the negative response that was received by Doha to the ultimatum."

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri told reporters at a joint news conference in Cairo that Qatar's response was "generally negative" and failed to "lay the foundation for Qatar's reversal of the policies it pursues."

He also described Doha's response as a "position that reflects a failure to realize the gravity of the situation."

The foreign ministers convening in Cairo agreed to meet again in Manama, the capital of Bahrain.

The four countries issued a 13-point list of demands last month, giving Qatar 10 days to comply. They later extended the deadline by another 48 hours at the request of Kuwait, which has acted as a mediator. That deadline expired early Wednesday.

On Wednesday, U.S. President Donald Trump spoke by phone with his Egyptian counterpart Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi. He called on "all parties to negotiate constructively to resolve the dispute" with Qatar and to "stop terrorist financing and discredit extremist ideology."

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