Qatar Under Pressure
A UAE newspaper has said that Qatar’s continued support to terrorist ideologies finally reached a tipping point. While snapping its diplomatic ties with Doha, three Gulf Cooperation Council countries; Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain, and Egypt made it clear that they will not tolerate Qatar’s hostile political stance, which undermines the stability and security of the region.
In an editorial on Tuesday, the Gulf News said, “For years, the GCC has tried to rein in Qatar’s reckless behaviour. However, in defiance of the core interests of the GCC, Doha attempted to keep a foot in both camps: deploying forces to the Saudi-led anti-Al Houthi operations in Yemen while developing close ties with Iran, a key backer of Al Houthis.
The paper continued, “Strangely Qatar continued to unleash a clandestine media war through media platforms like the Al Jazeera television channel. The country also kept harbouring and providing financial backing to some of the most radical voices in the Middle East. The fact that these elements and extremists call for violence not only in the Arab world, but also in other parts of the world, is not lost to Qatar. And yet it chose to look the other way.
“The Gulf stances were made amply clear during last month’s GCC Consultative Summit in Riyadh, where Qatar also was present. That is why the anti-GCC comments attributed to Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani are incomprehensible. Naturally anger at Doha built up across Gulf capitals. The Gulf states have had enough of Qatar’s petulance and asked the country to come clean. And that hasn’t happened.
“The Riyadh Document must be the baseline for any negotiation with Doha. It unambiguously states that Qatar must stop its interference in the domestic affairs of the GCC and Arab countries while emphasising that all hostile elements must be moved away from the GCC states, especially the Muslim Brotherhood group. Qatar, which has previously violated the spirit of the document, must be required to implement all the requirements of the Riyadh charter.
“The Middle East is in a flux. With strife ravaging large parts of Iraq and Syria, a deteriorating law and order situation nearby in Libya and a humanitarian disaster unfolding in Yemen, the need for a united GCC was never more urgent. There has to be a unity of purpose among the GCC nations and no country must be allowed to hold the bloc to ransom.
“The severing of diplomatic relations with Qatar was not a surprise. But this should not continue. Qatar should rectify its mistakes and return to the GCC’s path. And when that happens, the GCC will come out stronger,” concluded the Dubai-based daily.