Boycotting states extend deadline for Qatar by 48 hours
Four Arab states which accuse Qatar of supporting terrorism agreed to extend until late on Tuesday a deadline for Doha to comply with a list of demands, as U.S. President Donald Trump voiced concern to both sides about the dispute, Reuters reported.
Qatar has called the accusations baseless and says the demands – which include closing Qatar-based al Jazeera TV and ejecting Turkish troops based there – are so severe that they seem designed to be rejected, Reuters added.
Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have raised the possibility of further sanctions against Qatar if it does not comply with the 13 demands presented to Doha through Kuwait, which is acting as a mediator, according to Reuters.
According to a joint statement on Saudi state news agency SPA, the four countries agreed to a request by Kuwait to extend by 48 hours Sunday’s deadline for compliance.
They have not specified what further sanctions they could impose on Doha, but commercial bankers in the region believe that Saudi, Emirati and Bahraini banks might receive official guidance to pull deposits and interbank loans from Qatar, Reuters said.
Reuters added that the foreign ministers from the four countries will meet in Cairo on Wednesday to discuss Qatar, Egypt said, while Kuwaiti state media reported that Qatari foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani had submitted to Kuwait Doha’s formal response to the Arab states’ demands.
The four states cut diplomatic and commercial ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting terrorism, meddling in their internal affairs and advancing the agenda of regional foe Iran, all of which Qatar denies. Mediation efforts, including by the United States, have been fruitless, Reuters explained.
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