As Gulf tensions flare, reports of hacking pour in

Qatar is on a peninsula, sharing one land border with Saudi Arabia - which is now closed - and otherwise surrounded by the Gulf.

In this photo released by Emirates News Agency, WAM, the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, right, is received by UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, to hold.

"We have not asked for mediation, we believe this issue can be dealt with among the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council", the country's foreign minister said on Saudi state television. The four states have suspended all flights to and from Doha and given all Qatari citizens two weeks to return home.

Al-Marri commented that a child with Emirate citizenship was vetoed from leaving the UAE with his Qatari mother when she tried to fly to Doha to visit her family.

"That hack showed the UAE's real concerns and that what we really say in our private emails is what we say publicly", Gargash said.

In an interview with BBC radio, UAE Ambassador to Russia Omar Saif Ghobash said Qatar had to choose between supporting extremism or supporting its neighbours.

Qatar has recently developed into one of the most active investors in Turkey's economy.

Doha is a major worldwide travel hub, but flag carrier Qatar Airways now flies increasingly over Iran and Turkey after being blocked elsewhere in the Middle East.

Qatar has vehemently denied the allegations. Many people are flying back through Kuwait, which has stepped in to mediate the dispute.

After initially taking credit for the moves to isolate Qatar ("Perhaps this will be the beginning of the end to the horror of terrorism!" the president tweeted Tuesday), Trump called Qatar's leader Wednesday with an offer to help Gulf countries resolve the growing diplomatic crisis, through a meeting at the White House if necessary.

Qatar is a key US ally and has hosted the United States' largest Airbase in the Gulf since 2003.

Russia denied Wednesday it hacked the agency after a CNN report quoted anonymous US officials saying they suspected Russian hackers.

In this February 6, 2012 photo, then-Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, center, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, left, and then-Hamas leader, Khaled Mashaal, arrive to sign an agreement in Doha, Qatar.

Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies may have felt emboldened to move against Qatar by Trump´s visit last month to Riyadh, which saw the president clearly align United States interests with the kingdom and lash out at Iran.

The Yemen Government also extended its support to decision by a Saudi-led coalition fighting for more than two years to overthrow the Houthis from Sanaa.

In severing diplomatic ties with its Gulf neighbor on Monday, Riyadh accused Doha of supporting groups including some backed by Iran.

Trump's belated effort to calm the situation comes as the Qatari military has brought up 16 Leopard tanks out of storage in Doha and put the military on its highest alert out of fear that Saudi Arabia and others might attempt a military incursion.

  • Larry Hoffman