Qatar Row: Saudi and Egypt Among Six Countries to Cut Doha Links
Albanian Daily News
Published June 5, 2017
Qatar's government said it believed the move was "unjustified"Six Arab countries including Saudi Arabia and Egypt have cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of destabilising the region.
They say Qatar backs militant groups including so-called Islamic State (IS) and al-Qaeda, which Qatar denies.
The Saudi state news agency SPA said Riyadh had closed its borders, severing land, sea and air contact with the tiny peninsula of oil-rich Qatar.
Qatar called the decision "unjustified" and with "no basis in fact".
The unprecedented move is seen as a major split between powerful Gulf countries, who are also close US allies.
It comes amid heightened tensions between Gulf countries and their near-neighbour, Iran. The Saudi statement accused Qatar of collaborating with "Iranian-backed terrorist groups" in its restive Eastern region of Qatif and in Bahrain.
What has happened?
The diplomatic withdrawal was put into motion first by Bahrain then Saudi Arabia early on Monday. The United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt, Yemen and Libya followed suit.
SPA cited officials as saying the decision was taken to "protect its national security from the dangers of terrorism and extremism".
Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain have given all Qatari visitors and residents two weeks to leave their territory.