Donald Trump offers to mediate Qatar crisis in call with Emir

The announcement triggered a closing of borders, shutdown of flights, airspace and sea ports. Qatar Airways, a prominent worldwide carrier, was among the airlines forced to suspend some flights. It imports nearly all of its food, about 40 percent of it directly from Saudi Arabia.Slogans against and in support of Qatar have dominated Twitter in Arabic.Jubeir declined to confirm a list of 10 demands published by Al Jazeera, which included shutting down the Doha-based news channel, but added that Qatar knew what it needed to do to restore normal relations.They accused the tiny Persian Gulf state of harboring extremist groups and suggested Qatari support for the agenda of Saudi Arabia’s regional archrival Iran.The call comes the day after Trump spoke by phone about the crisis with Saudi Arabia’s King Salman.They have also had disagreements over its alleged ties with the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. However, as one unnamed official in CNN’s report said, based on previous intelligence on Russia’s cyber-hacking activities, “not much happens in that country without the blessing of the government”, the official said.Qatar’s longtime links to Iran also worry Saudi leaders.Trump made the offer Wednesday during a phone call with Sheikh Tamin bin Hamad Al Thani.Companies that ship goods to Qatar via the United Arab Emirates or Saudi Arabia – in particular food and consumer products – will feel an impact, said Stephen Wilhelm, Export Development Canada (EDC) regional vice-president for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.Qatar is predominantly Sunni, but has a small Shiite minority.Emirati and Saudi officials say those promises were not kept, and with Donald Trump’s public support, they are using their leverage to try to bring Qatar to heel once and for all.”During my recent trip to the Middle East I stated that there can no longer be funding of Radical Ideology”. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates blocked Qatari media over the statements. “In fact, if we do not act immediately, we might lose this market to rivals like Turkey”. Many don’t expect a resolution until at least the beginning of July.Qatar Airways announced on Wednesday that it has organised a charter flight to carry its passengers from Saudi Arabia to Doha via Kuwait, even as the airline has been forced to shut down its office in Saudi Arabia. According to the outlet, the Gulf countries were spurred to take action against Iran following the $110 billion arms deal that strengthened ties between Saudi Arabia and the United States last month.Trump on Tuesday backed the regional efforts to isolate Qatar, supporting Saudi Arabia and its allies and suggesting the key United States ally – home to the largest American airbase in the Middle East – has been funding extremism.