Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Why has the Arab world cut ties with Qatar? By Zou Zhiqiang

China.org.cn, June 11, 2017

On June 6, Saudi Arabia, along with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Egypt, Yemen, the Maldives and Libya, broke off diplomatic relations with Qatar, accusing the Gulf state of supporting and financing terrorism and extremism as well as undermining security and stability in the region. Meanwhile, the Arab League also announced that Qatar would be expelled from the organization.  Both Saudi Arabia and Qatar were members of the Arab League and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), but had long been at loggerheads over foreign policy issues.  Qatar was not hostile to the Arab Spring, and has since been active as a mediator in Middle East affairs. The disagreements between Qatar and its neighboring countries mainly involve the Muslim Brotherhood, Syria, Iran, Hamas, and the regional development mode.  In the process, Qatar has been trying to take over the leading role played by Saudi Arabia among the Gulf nations.