Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani – File Photo Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani – File Photo

Sheikh Tamim seeks protection from IRGC, deepening Gulf rift

Mon, Jul. 24, 2017
CAIRO – 24 July 2017: Qatar has allowed Iranian military troops to deploy across the country in a kind of provocation to the Arab quartet states, instead of supporting Arab efforts to resolve the crisis, according to political experts.

The tiny emirate has once again gambled its relation with Arab countries on Iran, which is also trying to provoke the parties of the crisis, aiming to control the Gulf region.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) were reportedly sent to protect the Qatari emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani inside his palace, raising an unprecedented wave of popular discontent in the Gulf country.

According to sources in Qatar, the Revolutionary Guards arrived in Qatar under the cover of training, amid media reports saying that Doha allowed Iranian elements to stay on the Qatari-Saudi border.

Sheikh Tamim’s earlier statements, in which he said there was “no wisdom in harboring hostility toward Iran,” confirmed previous reports that discussed in detail the tight security relationship between both countries, despite the existing tensions between Doha and most members of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Political experts believe that Tehran will not leave Doha even if the Qatari crisis settled, stressing that Iran will not waste this chance offered by Tamim to establish a military base on an Arab Gulf territory.

Qatar’s relations with several Arab states have been strained since May 24 over a leaked statement attributed to Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad, criticizing Gulf foreign policy with Iran, describing it as “unwise”.

Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad’s recent remarks in which he attacked Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) prompted the major Arab powers to adopt urgent and strict measures towards Doha.

The Qatari crisis was escalated when Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the UAE, along with Yemen and Libya announced a coordinated diplomatic break with Qatar, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. They also closed their airspace and seaports for Qatari transportation.
 
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