Qatar says state news agency first hacked in April
- Author: Leroy Wright Jun 08, 2017,
Jun 08, 2017, 15:15
Trump spoke to Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani as Qatar faces an economic and diplomatic blockade from Gulf states led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. They accused Qatar of supporting terrorism, an assertion that Doha had dismissed.
The sudden isolation has spurred Qatar to hold talks with Turkey, Iran and others to secure food and water supplies, said a Qatari official.
Qatar confirmed the call, saying Trump "expressed readiness to find a solution to the diplomatic crisis in the Gulf, and stressed his keenness that the Gulf remains stable".
"It is expected that there will be severe disruption of movement and partial or full closure of air, naval and border crossings from these countries into and from Qatar", the statement continues.
In a surprise move against a key US ally, Trump suggested Qatar - home to the largest American airbase in the Middle East - was funding extremism as he tacitly backed the diplomatic blockade of the emirate.
Qatar is also a major regional diplomatic player and worldwide investor and is set to host the World Cup, football's biggest tournament, in 2022.
"They said they would take a hard line on funding extremism, and all reference was pointing to Qatar".
"The measures are unjustified and are based on false and baseless claims", Qatar said in response to Monday's announcement. Newspapers and television channels in the region have also been engaged in a war of words.
But his Qatari counterpart, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, told CNN that it would not bow to nations who wish to control its sovereignty. While other airlines including Emirates, Etihad Airways, and Arabia have also announced similar moves.
Countries across the globe re increasingly faced with the same conundrum: How much credence to give to the president's Twitter musings when they deviate sharply from US policy?
He suggested Qatar was funding extremism.
Bans on Doha's fleet using regional ports and anchorages are threatening to halt some of its exports and disrupt those of liquefied natural gas (LNG). On the other hand, he said Israel has been working with Qatar since 2014 to keep the Gaza Strip from collapsing into chaos.
"Tensions are still high and mediation efforts by fellow Gulf Cooperation Council state Kuwait have yet to lead to a concrete solution, so investors will likely remain on edge", said one Dubai-based trader.