UPS - File photo
CAIRO – 9 June 2017: The United Parcel Service (UPS) package delivery company suspended all shipping operations between Qatar, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain on Thursday, following a decision to close air, sea and land transportation routes with Qatar from the other four nations.
“In order to remain compliant with current regulations affecting the entire transport sector, UPS will suspend the transit of goods to and from Qatar applicable to the following countries: Saudi Arabia, Egypt, U.A.E., and Bahrain. We will continue to monitor for any potential service impact with regards to air, road and sea connections and will communicate with our customers as additional information becomes available,” UPS said in a statement.
Danish logistics group A.P. Moller-Maersk's Maersk Line has also suspended shipments to Qatar, Al Arabiya satellite channel reported on Tuesday.
Maersk announced that it is no longer able to transport goods in or out of Qatar following the recent trade restrictions imposed by several Arab countries on the tiny Gulf state.
Qatar is seeking alternative shipping options after the transport ban imposed by a number of Arab and Gulf states has left it unable to import and export goods as normal.
“Iran has offered the use of three of its ports to ship food and water to Qatar as supplies run low,” said Qatari foreign minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, the BBC reported on Tuesday.
Qatari ships are free to sail in international waterways such as the Suez Canal but not under the Qatari flag.
“The international waterways are governed by special laws, meaning that all ships sailing in the Suez Canal including Qatari, Iranian, and Israeli ships sail under the flags of other nations such as Panama and Liberia. There is a difference between the nationality of the ship and the nationality of the owner of the ship,” head of the Maritime General Union of Marine Officers Captain Masoud Nidan explained to Al Shorouk newspaper on Monday.
Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E. and Bahrain announced the severance of diplomatic ties with Qatar and closed all air, sea and land connections with the country earlier this week on the grounds of Qatar’s support for terrorism and actions that have destabilized the region.