Qatar Group Plans to Pursue Damages Tied to Saudi-Led Blockade

Qatar will pay the Ashcroft Law Firm $2.5 million for a 90-day period as the country seeks to confirm its efforts to fight global terrorism and comply with financial regulations including U.S. Treasury rules, according to a Foreign Agents Registration Act, or FARA, filing on Friday with the Justice Department. When asked, officials from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates cite no specific catalyst, aside from mounting frustration with Qatar's unmet promises and double-dealing.

Qatar, however, is not entirely without support.

Rights group Amnesty International warned of "heartbreak and fear" suffered by ordinary people caught in the diplomatic crossfire.

It's been a head-spinning few days for U.S. policy in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates launched a diplomatic and economic assault on their Persian Gulf neighbour Qatar. Rights groups say families are being split apart, and some Qataris had to halt pilgrimages to Mecca during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Additionally, Saudi Arabia sealed shut Qatar's only land border, impacting a significant source of food imports for the peninsula nation.

Speaking to RT on Saturday, Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani said that "an information campaign to demonize Qatar has started all of a sudden".

The interview was carried out amid the crisis in Qatar's relations with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt which cut off ties with Doha on Monday after accusing it of supporting terrorism and destabilizing the Middle East. Qatar hosts the Al Udeid air base, home to more than 11,000 USA and coalition forces, many involved in the fight against Islamic State.

"The time had come to call on Qatar to end its funding they have to end that funding and its extremist ideology in terms of funding", Trump said.

Amnesty International said on June 9 that the Saudi-led coalition is "toying with the lives of thousands of Gulf residents".

"These steps result in tearing up families, disrupting businesses and interrupting students' education across the region", the NHRC said on Thursday in a news conference in Doha.

Qatar's neighbors have also given its citizens 14 days to leave and instructed their own nationals to return.

"These drastic measures are already having a brutal effect, splitting children from parents and husbands from wives".

  • Zachary Reyes