End Qatar blockade, UK FM tells Arab states

Posted July 10, 2017

"While entities from across the Gulf and Iran have been guilty of advancing extremism, those in Saudi Arabia are undoubtedly at the top of the list", Tom Wilson, a fellow at the Henry Jackson Society, said in a statement.

World Food Programme, UNICEF, World Health Organisation, UN refugee agency (UNHCR) and Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) will be the main beneficiaries of the funds, according to the deals signed on Saturday in Qatar's capital Doha.

Tillerson will fly to Kuwait, which has been trying to mediate in the stalemate, after Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain warned of new sanctions against Qatar as a deadline for action passed without a breakthrough.

Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said Wednesday Riyadh and its allies were asking Qatar to "surrender".

He pointed out that the inclusion of a number of journalists on the list indicated that the objective was to intimidate and to muzzle freedom of expression guaranteed by worldwide accords.

Later they issued a 13-point list of demands that was rejected by Doha.

Qatar has denied the allegations, and says the bloc's ultimatums are an affront to its sovereignty.

The chief of one of the world's busiest water corridors, the Suez Canal, says Egyptian authorities can't ban Qatari ships from crossing the vital waterway.

QATAR yesterday said it was establishing a committee to pursue compensation claims potentially worth billions of dollars over the country's blockade by Gulf states.

Following a decision on July 4 by Qatar Petroleum to expand gas production by 30%, using joint ventures with global businesses, companies were reportedly already forming an orderly queue for contracts. They also ordered Qatari citizens to leave their territories and took various steps against Qatari firms and financial institutions, added Al-Jazeera.

"Abadi has told them that Baghdad is neutral in the crisis and that it will not boycott another country", he said, adding that the PM is against playing the "role of a subordinate" such as other minor countries that have joined the Saudi-led alliance.

The four Arab states have cut diplomatic and transport ties with Qatar, which they also accuse of allying with their regional arch-foe Iran.