Boris Johnson calling for end to blockade of Qatar

In London, British foreign minister Boris Johnson said he would meet this week with his counterparts from Saudi Arabia, kuwait and the UAE, and called for calm.

"I have urged all sides to refrain from any further escalation and to engage in mediation efforts ..."

Swiss-based MSC, the world's no. 2 line, said it would deploy a new dedicated shipping service to Qatar from Salalah.

The governments accuse Qatar of destabilizing the region's security by supporting the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, and Iran.

"I call on all states to take immediate steps to de-escalate the situation and to find a rapid resolution through mediation", he said.

But last week the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt severed economic and diplomatic ties with Qatar, alleging it supported terrorist groups and Iran. Etihad, Emirates, Fly Dubai and Gulf Air said Monday, June 5, 2017, they would halt all flights in and out of Doha, the Qatari capital, . Senegal and Chad recalled their ambassadors from Doha.

Trump focused on Qatar's funding of terrorism last week, calling it a "hard but necessary action" that culminated in a statement in the Rose Garden during his press conference.

Cargo for Qatar is usually shipped to ports in the United Arab Emirates and then loaded onto smaller vessels.

But he supported moves by Kuwait to act as a mediator in the dispute "with the help of friendly countries such as the United States", he added.

The unprecedented measures have prompted investors and economists to ponder how long Qatar, the world's biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas, can weather the pressure without having to devalue its currency or sell any of its global assets.

Analysts say Qatar Airways' position as a major transcontinental carrier is now threatened.

Pakistan's prime minister Nawaz Sharif arrived in Jeddah on Monday for a "consultation" with the Saudi leadership in order to stem a crisis that has seen several Arab countries severing ties with Qatar, officials and local media reported.

"Nations came to me and spoke to me about confronting Qatar", Trump said in prepared remarks.

Analysts estimate that at least 40 percent of all of Qatar's food supplies are transported across its land border with Saudi Arabia.

  • Carolyn Briggs