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Al-Jazeera manager denounces Gulf demands for its shutdown

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt had released a joint statement naming 59 Qatar-based or -funded individuals and 12 organizations labeled “terrorist” on June 15.Four Arab states that have boycotted Qatar have reportedly handed the country a list of 13 demands, including some likely to infuriate Doha and exacerbate the region’s worst crisis in decades.Launched in 1996 with financial support from Qatar’s rulers, Al-Jazeera has over the years grown into one of the Middle East’s most influential and controversial media outlets. He suggested instead that Turkey might bolster its presence.”The base in Qatar is both a Turkish base and one that will preserve the security of Qatar and the region”. “Re-evaluating the base agreement with Qatar is not on our agenda”.Five armoured vehicles and 23 military personnel arrived in Doha on Thursday in a deployment Turkey’s armed forces said was part of a military training and cooperation deal. In addition to the specific demands, it calls on Qatar to align itself politically with GCC countries and focus on countering Iran, which Saudi and its allies, as well as U.S. and Israel, see as the major threat in the region.Qatar vehemently denies funding or supporting extremism but acknowledges that it allows members of some extremist groups such as Hamas to live in Qatar, arguing that fostering dialogue with those groups is key to resolving global conflicts.Qatar’s foreign minister on June 19 said his country wouldn’t bargain away what it sees as its sovereign rights and called on the Saudi alliance to conduct negotiations in a “civilized way”, after first lifting the blockade.However, Marwan Bishara, Al Jazeera’s senior political analyst, wrote on the news site: “When they talk about “terrorism”, this is something that Qatar doesn’t do”.Only a day earlier, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had warned the demands must be “reasonable and actionable”. “Imagine another country demanding that CNN be closed”, said 40-year-old Haseeb Mansour, who works for telecom operator Ooredoo.Qatar’s government has said it will not negotiate until Arab nations lift their blockade.”There’s a lot on the list that is simply not true or unreasonable, so how can we comply?” he said.Kalin said the Turkish president touched on the issue while speaking by phone to the Saudi King and Crown Prince, adding that Turkey demonstrated a constructive stance towards the issue of Qatar and said Ankara will take the necessary steps when delegated to carry out a task.Kuwait, which is mediating the dispute between Qatar and other Arab nations, delivered the 13 demands. That, at least, is according to the four Arab neighbors that drew them up and sent them via Kuwaiti mediators Friday – Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates. The list includes an end to Turkey’s military presence in Qatar.Turkey is backing Qatar and has called for an end to the economic and diplomatic isolation of Doha, which has prompted Qatari citizens to stockpile goods amid fears food and water stocks would deplete as the country depends on food imports.