Erdogan vows "every kind of support" for Qatar

Cornelia Mascio
Giugno 20, 2017

President Donald Trump said he backed a Saudi Arabia-led movement to isolate Qatar over its funding of extremist groups, once again sending conflicting signals about the US stance in a dispute between American allies in the Gulf region.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain lead a string of countries that this week cut ties with Qatar over what they say is the emirate's financing of extremist groups and its ties to Iran. "I decided ...the time had come to call on Qatar to end its funding", Trump said, adding that he helped plan the Qatar action with Arab leaders after a recent summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. "Perhaps this will be the beginning of the end to the horror of terrorism!" he wrote on the social media site.

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump is ramping up pressure on Qatar to stop what he calls a "high level" of financial support of terrorism, even as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson tries to calm the worst diplomatic crisis in the Persian Gulf in years.

The call comes the day after Trump spoke by phone about the crisis with Saudi Arabia's King Salman.

Qatar's ambassador to the United States told the Financial Times on Thursday that Saudi Arabia and its allies planned to give a list of demands - expected to include issues related to terrorism - to Doha within 10 days and that the Qatari leadership would consider taking action where they felt it was appropriate.

The list and response add to the diplomatic and political tensions in the Gulf that have erupted since Saudi Arabia and its allies severed ties with Qatar over its alleged support for extremism. The Qatari Foreign Ministry said in a statement the two held talks on how "restore the normal relations" of the Gulf.

In an earlier interview with the Saudi newspaper Makkah on Wednesday, Sheikh Khalid said he appreciated Kuwaiti mediation to resolve the dispute but that all options were open for his country to protect itself from Doha.

It is the U.S. Air Force's largest base in the region.

Qatar has steadfastly denied the allegations and has largely blamed a hack of its state news organization for the crisis.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer told a regular press briefing on Tuesday that the US wants to see the diplomatic row between Qatar and the other Gulf nations "deescalated and resolved immediately".

He also called the moves against Qatar "violations of global law and worldwide humanitarian law".

The move saw Qatar's only land border closed and air and sea links cut by the four Arab countries.

Emirates Post Group also said it had suspended postal services to Qatar as of Tuesday, according to state news agency Wam.

Central banks in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain were this week said to have asked lenders to provide details of their exposure to Qatari clients. "They will not have a positive impact on the region but a negative one", he told a press conference during a visit in Germany. Several countries followed suit.

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