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Qatar Crisis: Deadline to Meet Arab Neighbors’ Demands Looms

Saudi Arabia’s official state news agency, citing an official source, said the Kingdom had made a decision to break relations with Qatar “proceeding from the exercise of its sovereign right guaranteed by worldwide law and the protection of national security from the dangers of terrorism and extremism”.Washington has cautioned that some of the demands would be hard for Qatar to accept, asking the Saudis for a clear list of grievances that are “reasonable and actionable”. Qatar’s government said that the demands were unacceptable as they had nothing to do with the fight against terrorism but aimed to limit the country’s sovereignty.Two days ago, authorities in Qatar hired Swiss lawyers to sue Gulf blockade states which are “responsible to compensate” those hit by the anti-Qatar measures.Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt has issued an ultimatum with 13 demands, accusing Doha of supporting extremist groups.US President Donald Trump has backed the Arab boycott of Qatar, but his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson last week called for the countries to sit down and work out their differences.Elaborating his point Kose said, “When it comes to Qatar, Turkey and other actors including Oman and Kuwait, try to stay impartial so as to not help any independent bipolar regional order”.The foreign minister met with U.S. secretary of state Rex Tillerson this week, as did Saudi counterpart Adel al-Jubeir. But they never became enemies, even though they have been fighting one another indirectly in Syria since 2012.Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said the demands were “against worldwide law”.”Qatar has been funding terrorist organizations, Hezbollah, they’ve been funding radical aspects of the Muslim Brotherhood, they have been spreading disinformation”.Russian President Vladimir Putin has separately spoken with the leaders of Qatar and Bahrain, urging direct dialogue among all the states involved, according to statements released by the Kremlin on Saturday.Speaking to Reuters on the sidelines of the news conference, he said that the demand by the Arab states that Qatar close the Turkish air base was “out of the question”.Doha has refused to meet the demands, calling them unreasonable, and said it would not negotiate with the countries unless the blockade has been lifted.