Qatar crisis: Saudi Arabia and allies to meet in Cairo

Qatar crisis: Saudi Arabia and allies to meet in Cairo

Saudi-led bloc has received Qatar's response to its 13 demands, and has not been satisfied with them.

State-run Qatar Petroleum has said it plans to increase natural gas production by 30 percent over the next several years.

Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, the UAE's foreign minister, said any further action against Qatar will be aimed at changing the country's direction towards promoting peace.

On Wednesday, Egypt's foreign minister, Sameh Shukri said Qatar's official response to the demands - which was not made public - was "negative" and "does not realize the gravity of the situation", according to The Associated Press.

Qatar also hosts the largest U.S. military base in the region and has declared itself as an U.S. ally, but Doha is accused of not only tolerating, but encouraging private funding of terrorist organizations, such as the Muslim Brotherhood and former Iraq Al Qaida group AQI, today known as ISIS.

Saudi's Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir highlighted that they will "take the right steps at the right time" without going into details while stressing that "Qatar must change its policies for our stance to change".

Shares in the country's banks fell sharply last month after the UAE's central bank told its lenders to stop dealing with 59 people linked to Qatar and to carry out enhanced due diligence on their activities with six Qatari banks.

Qatari Foreign Minister Sheik Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani said at a joint news conference with his German counterpart on Tuesday that its response was "given in goodwill and good initiative for a constructive solution", but insisted that Doha would not compromise on its sovereignty.

They view Qatar's independent diplomatic stances and support for 2011 "Arab Spring" uprisings as support for terrorism and a risky breaking of ranks - charges Doha vigorously denies.

Following the meeting in Cairo held to consider Doha's respose, a joint statement announced that existing sanctions would remain in place.

The demands to Qatar including shutting down the Al Jazeera broadcaster and scaling down ties with Iran.

The foreign ministers said they would meet again soon in the Bahraini capital, Manama, but gave no date.

US President Donald Trump, while flying from Washington to Europe for meetings in Warsaw and Hamburg, telephoned Wednesday with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. He said Kuwait's mediation, backed by the U.S., had already achieved a lot.

Qatar had earlier responded to the deadline with defiance, calling the demands "unrealistic and is not actionable".

While the United States government supports numerous policies motivating the Arab blockade, it faces a practical challenge, as Qatar hosts the America's largest military base in the Middle East.



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