Kuwaiti FM refers to ‘fruitful’ discussions to end Gulf crisis

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Fri, 04 Dec 2020 - 03:30 GMT

FILE - Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Ahmed El-Nasser El-Sabah – Kuwaiti Foreign Ministry

FILE - Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Ahmed El-Nasser El-Sabah – Kuwaiti Foreign Ministry

CAIRO – 4 December 2020: Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Ahmed El-Nasser El-Sabah on Friday said fruitful discussions have been held to reach a settlement to the Gulf crisis between Qatar and four of its neighbors.

 

This can put an end to a three-and-a-half year-rift between Qatar and the quartet of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain, over accusations that the former finances terrorism and harbors fugitives.

 

“Fruitful discussions have taken place during the past period, during which all parties stressed their keenness to [maintain] Gulf and Arab solidarity and stability, and to reach a final agreement that will achieve what they aspire for in terms of lasting solidarity between their countries and achieve what is good for their people,” read a statement by Sheikh Ahmed El-Nasser Al-Sabah.

 

These discussions come within the framework of the reconciliation efforts previously led by the deceased Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber, and in continuation of the efforts being made by the current Emir Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, as well as President of the United States Donald Trump, to resolve the crisis, the statement added.

 

The Kuwaiti foreign minister also expressed appreciation for the “valuable” efforts made by Senior Advisor to Trump Jared Kushner in this regard.

 

In June 2017, the Arab quartet have cut diplomatic ties with Doha and have asked Qatari authorities to meet a number of demands to end the rift, including shutting state-run Al-Jazeera channel.

 

Qatari Foreign Ministry Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani on Twitter has hailed the Kuwaiti announcement, calling it “an important step towards resolving the Gulf crisis”.

 

“We thank the sisterly Kuwait for its mediation since the beginning of the crisis. We also appreciate the US efforts made in this regard and affirm that our priority was and will remain the interest and security of peoples of the Gulf and the region.”

 

The four nations who are boycotting Qatar — Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates — did not immediately acknowledge this burst of optimism by Kuwait, which has been trying to mediate an end to the crisis since it began in June 2017. However, the statement by Kuwait’s foreign minister marked the first time officials there have made a special televised communique on the crisis.

 

Qatar, an energy-rich nation that will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, has seen its state-run Qatar Airways blocked from the boycotting nations’ airspace and its only land border to Saudi Arabia shut over the crisis.

 

Additional reporting by AP.

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