Rights groups ‘condemn’ demand to close down Al Jazeera 

  • A number of international, regional and national rights organisations “unequivocally” condemned the Saudi-led group’s demand to close Al Jazeera and other media outlets that Qatar allegedly funds. 
  • The group made the statement on Tuesday at a conference organised by Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee in Doha. 
  • The organisations also expressed their “total solidarity with journalists and other media and ancillary works at Al Jazeera and other targeted media”. 

The latest developments since several countries, including Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt, cut ties with Qatar on June 5. (All times local Doha time).

10:10am – ‘Differing views over future of Arab people at heart of Gulf crisis’

  • The differences between how Qatar and the Saudi-led bloc view the future of the Arab people is at the heart of the Gulf crisis, a senior Qatari official said on Friday.
  • Fahad bin Mohammed Al Attiyah, Qatar’s ambassador to Russia, told a radio station in Moscow that his country supported the Arab people’s aspirations in the wake of uprisings that began in Tunisia in 2010, Qatar News Agency reported.
  • Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt, however, chose to go against that current, he said, adding that the four states wanted Qatar to punish those who oppose their governments and brand them terrorists.
  • “This in itself is terrorism,” he said. “The siege countries are trying to reproduce the regimes that produced terrorism, and they want to convince us that these regimes will fight terrorism.”

2:00am – Arab states to meet in Bahrain on Saturday

  • Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain will meet in Manama on Saturday to discuss the latest developments on their blockade of Qatar, Egypt’s foreign ministry said on Friday.
  • In the two-day meeting, the four countries will press Qatar to comply with their demands, which include stopping alleged interference in their internal affairs, the Egyptian statement said.

11:15am – Qatar refuses to ‘outsource foreign policy’ 

  • Qatar said it refuses to bow to Saudi-led demands to “outsource” its foreign policy to resolve the Gulf crisis.
  • Government spokesman Sheikh Saif bin Ahmed Al-Thani told AFP in an interview that Qatar’s sovereignty and independence is behind the dispute.
  • “It (the crisis) is about… outsourcing our foreign policy so that decisions are not made in Qatar, and that is something that will never be acceptable,” he said.

12:05am – Qatar says UN should play role in resolving Gulf crisis  

  • Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani called on the UN to help resolve the Gulf crisis, adding that the Saudi-led group blockading Qatar has violated international law. 
  • Speaking after a meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, the foreign minister said that Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain are showing “stubbornness” and have not taken any steps to solve the crisis. 
  • He vowed that Qatar will spare no effort to overcome what he called “violations” and said “the United Nations is the right platform to start from”. 

11:35am – UAE asks banks to freeze accounts of those named on Qatar-linked blacklist 

  • The United Arab Emirates’ central bank has asked all banks to stop dealing with the 18 individuals and entities added to a Qatar-linked blacklist, the state news agency WAM reported on Wednesday. 
  • The move makes it the first financial watchdog in the Gulf to act on the new blacklist, with regulators in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt likely to follow.  
  • In a circular, the UAE watchdog asked banks and financial institutions to “start immediate search for and freezing of all bank accounts, investments, and deposits that may be held by any individual or entity” included on the July 25 list.

2:45am – Qatar’s FM says blockading states are ignoring US calls to end Gulf crisis

  • Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani is in Washington DC for talks with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
  • “It was noticed that the blockade states did not react to the suggestions made by the US Secretary of State,” said Mohammed bin Abdulrahman after a meeting on Wednesday. 
  • The Qatari foreign minister added that Qatar had dealt with US advice in a “positive and constructive way”.
  • “In addition, we discussed our bilateral relations and the memorandum of understanding on fighting terrorism that we signed and the measures we took regarding it,” said Mohammed bin Abdulrahman.

1:00pm – Qatar says new Saudi bloc blacklist ‘disappointing’

  • Sheikh Saif bin Ahmed Al Thani, Qatar’s communications director, said the decision by four Arab states to add 18 groups and individuals allegedly linked to Doha to their “terrorist” list has no basis in fact. 
  • “It comes as a disappointing surprise that the blockading countries are still pursuing this story as part of their smear campaign against Qatar,” he said in a statement on Wednesday. 
  • “This latest list provides further evidence that the blockading countries are not committed to the fight against terrorism,” he said, adding: “All individuals with links to terrorism in Qatar have been prosecuted.”

9:55am – Qatar reiterates support for ‘peaceful means’ to settle disputes 

  • Qatar said it remains committed to settling international disputes through peaceful means despite a unilateral blockade imposed against the Gulf nation by its Arab neighbours.
  • Speaking at the UN Security Council on Wednesday, Sheikha Alia Ahmed bin Saif Al Thani, Qatar’s envoy to the UN, said her government supports global efforts at ensuring peace and security, as well as international and bilateral efforts to combat terrorism.
  • She also praised Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah’s mediatory efforts at resolving the diplomatic crisis in the Gulf. 

4:05am – Qatari FM’s US visit aims to inform politicians about impacts of the crisis

  • Qatar’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said on Wednesday that his current visit to Washington is part of the follow-up efforts exerted by the State of Kuwait in partnership with the United States to reach a diplomatic solution to the Qatar-Gulf crisis.
  • In an interview with Al Jazeera, Mohammed bin Abdulrahman said that “this visit is also aimed at informing politicians, senators and MPs in the United States about the negative impacts of this crisis on the region”.
  • The Foreign Minister said that “the US position demanded, since the outbreak of the crisis, the rapid lifting of the unjust siege against Qatar … but the contradictory statements of the siege countries prevented this to happen.”

3:25am – Qatari compensation committee receives nearly 3,000 claims

  • The Qatari Compensation Claims Committee has received 2,945 individual cases from the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), reported the Qatar News Agency on Wednesday.
  • Ahmed bin Hassan Al-Hammadi – Secretary-general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and member of the claims committee – told Al Jazeera that the committee receives about 100-160 complaints and 60 calls a day.
  • The Compensation Claims Committee was formed on July 9 to consider citizen compensation or bring cases to the competent domestic and international courts related to the blockade.
  • The compensation committee was divided into three sections, said Al-Hammadi: the first is to examine citizens’ complaints about violations of human rights or individual damage; and the second for traders who were affected by the closure of land, sea and air borders; and third of government institutions affected by the blockade such as the Ministry of Economy and Qatari Aviation.

10:45pm – Lebanon’s PM: Dialogue is the best way to resolve the Gulf crisis

  • Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri has said that dialogue was the best way to improve ties between Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
  • “I think there is an effort by the Kuwaitis [to resolve the crisis]… I think that they made some progress. We believe that the dialogue is the best way in improving the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Qatar,” he told reporters on Tuesday at a joint press conference with US President Donald Trump at the White House.
  • “I believe that maybe the United States could also help in solving this issue in the Gulf,” he added.

10pm – Qatar’s FM: The quartet undermines mediation efforts

  • Qatar’s foreign minister has criticised Saudi Arabia and three other blockading countries for actions which he said were undermining mediation efforts backed by the US.
  • “We see there is a negative behaviour aimed at influencing the mediation, either through statements or through (media) leaks which they launch at critical moments,” Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani told Al Jazeera late on Tuesday.
  • He reiterated the Qatari position that Doha was ready for dialogue on a range of issues of concern but that it would not negotiate over topics to do with internal affairs and that the boycott against it must be lifted.

5:40pm – Egypt: No compromise in dispute with Qatar

  • Egypt has said that the four Arab states would accept no compromise in their dispute with Qatar over allegations that Doha supports “terrorism”.
  • Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, speaking after talks with warned the European Union diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini in Brussels on Tuesday, said Qatar must accept in full the demands by Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
  • “It is not an issue of compromise, we cannot compromise with any form of terrorism, we cannot compromise or enter into any form of negotiations,” Shoukry told a press conference.
  • “It is only once the necessary measures are undertaken by Qatar, that goes towards truly accepting to be a partner in the fight against terrorism, that this crisis will be resolved,” he said.

4:25pm – Erdogan: Gulf tour was ‘productive and successful’

  • Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday described his two-day trip to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar to deal with the Gulf crisis as “productive and successful”.
  • He told lawmakers from his ruling AK Party at a parliamentary meeting: “The contacts we have made during this visit have been useful, and we will continue our efforts for the stability and peace of the region with increasing determination.”

2:15pm – Rights groups ‘condemn’ demand to close down Al Jazeera 

  • A number of international, regional and national rights organisations “unequivocally” condemned the Saudi-led group’s demand to close Al Jazeera and other media outlets that Qatar allegedly funds. 
  • The group made the statement on Tuesday at a conference organised by Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee in Doha. 
  • The organisations also expressed their “total solidarity with journalists and other media and ancillary works at Al Jazeera and other targeted media”. 

1:30pm – Qatar: ‘Lifting siege comes before dialogue’

  • Qatar’s Defense Minister Khalid bin Mohammed al-Attiyah says the blockade imposed on his country by four Arab states must be lifted before engaging in any dialogue with its neighbours.
  • “Lifting the siege should precede any dialogue,” al-Attiyah said in an interview with Russia Today, excerpts of which was published by Qatar’s official news agency on Tuesday.
  • “If the blockade countries remain reluctant to lift the siege, Qatar will be compelled to resort to the available international legal procedures to lift it,” he said.

1:15pm – Saudi-led states blacklist 18 individuals and groups

  • Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have added 18 individuals and groups to its so-called “terror list”, according to state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA).
  • The new entrants include entities from Libya and Yemen and individuals from Qatar, Yemen and Kuwait who the Arab states say have direct and indirect links to Qatari authorities, a joint statement by the Saudi-led group said, according to SPA.

1:05pm – Saudi lobby pays $138,000 for anti-Qatar ads in the US

  • A Saudi lobby in the US has launched a television advertisement campaign against Qatar, contracts reviewed by Al Jazeera show, with $138,000 spent on seven, 30-second TV spots.
  • The TV spots have been purchased by the Saudi American Public Relation Affairs Committee (SAPRAC).

3:15am – Qatar’s defence minister praises Russia

  • Qatar’s Minister of State for Defence Affairs Dr Khalid bin Mohammad Al Attiyah on Monday praised Russia’s clear position that supports lifting the unjust siege imposed on the Gulf nation.
  • Al Attiyah said in an interview with Russian news channel RT that the speech of the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani was clear and comprehensive, laying a road map and telling the truth that many of the peoples knew but that some parties refuse to understand.
  • He noted that the Emir intended to deliver a speech to the Qatari people and residents since the beginning of the crisis but opted to delay the speech to a suitable time in response to the request of Emir of the State of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah, who has led the mediation efforts to end the crisis. 

10:15pm – UN praises Qatar’s call for dialogue

  • UN’s Secretary-General Antonio Guterres welcomed on Monday the call for dialogue Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani to resolve the Gulf crisis.
  • Guterres encouraged all parties to enter a negotiation to lift the blockade imposed on Qatar and seek an acceptable solution for all parties regarding the crisis.
  • He also praised the mediation efforts of Kuwait, expressing his hope that these efforts will continue.

8:20pm – Erdogan departs from Doha after talks

  • Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan left Doha late on Monday after meeting with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

8:15pm – Lavrov: Russia ready to help mediate in Gulf crisis

  • Russia is ready to help mediate in the dispute between Qatar and four other Arab states if approached, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in an interview released on Monday.
  • “We are interested in this crisis being overcome, taking into account mutual concerns and finding solutions which will be acceptable for all participants of this process,” Lavrov told Kurdish television channel Rudaw, according to a transcript of the interview published on the foreign ministry’s website.
  • “We support the mediating efforts which are being made by the Emir of Kuwait… If as part of those efforts or in addition to them all sides think that Russia could also do something useful, we will be ready to respond to such appeals,” Lavrov said, according to the transcript.

6:30pm – Qatar’s Emir and Erdogan discuss Gulf crisis

  • Qatar and Turkey have discussed the Gulf crisis and efforts being exerted to defuse the dispute between Doha and a group of Saudi-led Arab states through dialogue and diplomatic means.
  • This came during a meeting between Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Doha on Monday.
  • The two sides praised Kuwait mediation to end the row. Erdogan is on a Gulf tour that took him to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
  • The two leaders also discussed Qatar-Turkey joint efforts in the fight against “terrorism and extremism”, according to Qatar’s state news agency.

2:25pm – Saudi Arabia allows access to pilgrims from Qatar 

  • Saudi Arabia has allowed access to pilgrims from neighbouring Qatar aboard all flights other than Qatar Airways, Qatar’s national carrier.
  • “Pilgrims from Qatar who have Hajj permits … can come directly from Doha or through any other transit place,” the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) said in a statement cited by the official SPA news agency on Sunday.

10:55pm – Qatar-based websites were briefly unblocked in Saudi Arabia

  • A Saudi official announced on his Twitter account early on Monday that Qatar-based websites were unblocked in the country because of a technical issue and they will be blocked again in a few hours, according to Turkey’s Anadolu agency.
  • Saud al-Qahtani, a Saudi royal court adviser, was apparently referring to Al Jazeera and beIN Sports that have been blocked in the country since the beginning of the Gulf crisis.
  • There was no official statement on the issue.

11:30pm – Erdogan meets with Kuwait’s Emir

  • Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has held a meeting with Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al Sabah at Dar Salwa Palace which lasted an hour.

8pm – Erdogan heads to Kuwait

  • Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has left Saudi Arabia for Kuwait, the mediator in the Gulf crisis.
  • He will meet with Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al Sabah later on Sunday.
  • Erdogan is accompanied by Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Berat Albayrak, Defence Minister Nurettin Canikli, Chief of Staff General Hulusi Akar, and National Intelligence Organisation (MIT) head Hakan Fidan.

7:20pm – Mogherini urges talks to resolve Gulf crisis

  • Federica Mogherini, the European Union foreign affairs chief, on Sunday called for swift direct talks to resolve the Gulf crisis.
  • Her remark came in a statement after she met Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al Sabah and expressed EU support for Kuwait’s “relentless mediation efforts” in the dispute.
  • Mogherini called on “all the parties to enter into negotiations to agree clear principles and a roadmap for a swift resolution of the crisis”.
  • She said the EU was ready to support the process of negotiations and assist in the implementation of a plan for the resolution of the crisis, in particular in the area of counterterrorism.

7:10pm – Alliance for Freedom and Dignity probes Qatar blockade

  • A European human rights organisation has called on Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain to end their blockade against Qatar and help alleviate the suffering of citizens on disputing sides.
  • A 16-member delegation from the Brussels-based Alliance for Freedom and Dignity, AFD, travelled to Doha to investigate and document the humanitarian impact on ordinary citizens resulting from the blockade imposed on Qatar on June 5.

6:45pm – UK welcomes Qatar’s call for Gulf crisis talks

  • Britain’s government has praised Qatari Emir’s willingness for dialogue to resolve the ongoing diplomatic dispute with Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt. 
  • “I welcome the Emir of Qatar’s commitment to combat terrorism in all its manifestations, including terrorist financing,” Britain’s Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said in a statemen on Sunday.
  • “The Emir also pledged to resolve the remaining differences with Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Bahrain through dialogue, negotiation, and Kuwaiti mediation. These steps will help to resolve the dispute,” Johnson added.

5:55pm – Erdogan meets Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince

  • Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met Saudi Arabia’s King Salman  and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman separately on Sunday in the Saudi city of Jeddah on the first leg of his Gulf tour, which will also include Kuwait and Qatar.

4:30pm – US army commander meets Qatar’s Emir in Doha

  • Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani met with General Joseph Leonard Votel, commander of US Central Command (CENTCOM), on Sunday in Doha.
  • According to Qatar’s state news agency, they discussed the ways of increasing their defence cooperation and reviewed joint operations between Qatar and the US in combating terrorism.
  • General Votel thanked Sheikh Tamim’s pivotal role in this field.

1:35pm – EU foreign policy chief visits Kuwait

  • Federica Mogherini has arrived in Kuwait as part of efforts to resolve the Gulf crisis. 
  • She met Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah and other officials on Sunday.

10:35am – Erdogan: Prolonging Gulf crisis ‘not in anyone’s interest’

  • Prolonging the crisis in the Gulf is not in the interest of anyone, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said as he embarked on a visit to the region.
  • “No-one has any interest in prolonging this crisis any more,” the president said before leaving Istanbul airport. He accused “enemies” of seeking to “fire up tensions between brothers”.

9:30pm – UAE: No dialogue with Qatar until it revises policies

  • Anwar Gargash, the foreign minister of the United Arab Emirates, said a call for dialogue by Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani was welcome, but it could only happen after Doha had made changes in its policies. He did not specify the required changes.
  • “Dialogue is necessary and needed but its backbone has to be revision,” Gargash said on his Twitter account.
  • He expressed disappointment with by Sheikh Tamim’s Friday speech: “I had hoped that the speech of Sheikh Tamim would be an initiative for revision.”

5:30pm – Qatar’s BeIN sports network back on air in UAE

  • Qatar’s BeIN sports satelite network was broadcasting again on Saturday in the United Arab Emirates, according to subscribers to its channels which have been blocked since the start of a Gulf crisis.
  • “We are again receiving the network of BeIN sports channels, distributed by Du,” one of two telecommunications companies in the Emirates, one customer told AFP news agency.
  • Etisalat, a UAE-based telecommunications giant, had also reinstated BeIN sports, according to several subscribers to its channels. Customers were informed of the move in an email from Etisalat.
  • “We would like to advise that starting 22 July 2017 the BeIN package will be available to customers and normal charges will apply,” the message said. “The provision of the BeIN package will be subject to an ongoing review.”

03:10am – Key points of Qatari Emir’s speech

  • The spirit of solidarity, harmony and defiance that had prevailed in the people of Qatar frustrated the hopes of those who banked on the opposite.
  • Qatar is fighting terrorism, relentlessly and without compromises and the international community recognises this.
  • Differences are resolved through dialogue and negotiation and we should not burden civilians with political differences.
  • We are opening our economy to initiatives, investments, production of food, medicine and ultimately to diversify our source of income.
  • We are open to dialogue to find solutions to lingering problems, within the framework of respect for the sovereignty and will of each state as mutual undertakings and joint commitments binding all.

12:41am – Turkish President to embark on a two-day Gulf tour

  • Recep Tayyip Erdogan will embark on a two-day Gulf tour starting on Sunday as part of his efforts to resolve the crisis in the region.
  • His first stop will be in the Saudi port city of Jeddah, during which he will meet Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud and his son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud.
  • Erdogan will then depart for Kuwait to meet Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah, who has led mediation efforts to resolve the crisis. His next stop will be Doha, where he will meet the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

10:15pm – Emir Sheikh Tamim denounces “smearing” of Qatar 

  • Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani has denounced the “malicious smearing campaign” directed against the country in his first address following the blockade. 
  • Sheikh Tamim said Qatar and its people “rose spontaneously defending the sovereignty and independence of the country.”

05:20pm – Tillerson hopes Qatar blockade will be lifted 

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has renewed his call on Arab states to lift the blockade on Qatar, saying the US is satisfied with Doha’s efforts to implement an agreement aimed at combating terror financing. 
  • “They have been very aggressive in implementing that agreement, so I think we’re satisfied with the effort they’re putting forth,” Tillerson told reporters just before meeting with Omani Foreign Minister Yusuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah at the State Department on Friday.

04:50pm – UAE welcomes Qatar’s move to amend anti-terror laws 

  • The United Arab Emirates on Friday welcomed Qatar’s decision to amend its anti-terrorism laws, in one of the first positive signs since sanctions were imposed on Doha in June. 
  • “The Qatari decree to amend the anti-terrorism law is a positive step to deal seriously with the 59 terrorists,” UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said on Twitter. 
  • Gargash also said the countries’ concerns about Qatar’s relationship with Iran had eased since Kuwait ordered the expulsion of Iranian diplomats for alleged links to a “spy and terror” cell on Thursday. 

04:33pm – Erdogan says Turkey will try to solve GCC crisis 

  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he would do his best to solve problems between the “brothers of the Gulf region” as he prepared to visit Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar on July 23-24. 
  • Erdogan has been a staunch ally of Qatar in its dispute with its neighbours. He has criticised a list of demands by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt to end sanctions they imposed on Doha. 
  • In a speech in Istanbul, Erdogan said the political problems were temporary and he called on Saudi Arabia, the UAE and other Gulf states to invest in Turkey

10:45am – China urges Gulf crisis talks after Qatar FM visit 

  • China’s foreign minister has called on Doha and the four Arab countries blockading Qatar to resolve their differences through talks within the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), according to Chinese state media. 
  • Wang Yi made the remarks after meeting his Qatari counterpart in Beijing on Thursday, a day after he held talks with a top UAE official. 
  • “All sides should continue restraint and conduct face-to-face talks as soon as possible, so as to avoid escalation of the situation, send out a positive signal in addressing the crisis through political and diplomatic means, and reassure the role of the GCC,” Wang said. 

2:40am – Qatar’s Emir orders changes to law combating terrorism

  • Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani has issued a decree amending some provisions of a law on “combating terrorism”, the state news agency reported.
  • The decree issued on Thursday included definitions for the terms “terrorist”, “crime”, “terrorist acts”, “terrorist entities”, “the freezing of funds” and the “financing of terrorism”, according to the Qatar News Agency.
  • Meanwhile at the United Nations, Qatar’s UN ambassador, Alya Ahmed Saif Al Thani, rejected the “baseless accusations” made by Egyptian Deputy UN Ambassador Ihab Awad Moustafa against Doha.
  • Earlier on Thursday, Moustafa told the UN Security Council that Qatar is adopting a “pro-terrorist” policy that violated UN council resolutions, and said it is “shameful” that the 15-member body had not held Qatar accountable.

1am – Qatar says cyberattack ‘originated from the UAE’

  • Qatar’s Ministry of Interior say experts now have evidence showing that the cyberattack on the country’s official media originated from the United Arab Emirates.
  • During a news conference in Doha on Thursday, officials said the planning for the hacking of Qatar News Agency (QNA) started as early as April.
  • Investigators also reportedly traced the IP (internet protocol) address linked to the hacking to the UAE. Officials said the case has been referred to prosecutors.
  • The UAE denies the allegations.

6:10pm – Qatar presents more evidence of hacking

  • Qatar has presented on Thursday new evidence and technical details “confirming direct contact” from one of the blockading countries, leading to the hacking of the country’s official media.
  • Qatar’s Ministry of Interior said the hackers obtained addresses, passwords and emails of state media staff, using them to carry out the attack against Qatar News Agency and its related media accounts. 

1:00pm – Qatar FM to meet Chinese counterpart 

  • Qatar’s foreign minister is visiting Beijing a day after his Chinese counterpart told a top UAE official that China hoped the rift between the Gulf countries could be repaired.
  • Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani is expected to meet Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Thursday, according to China’s foreign ministry.  

9:50am – Qatar to release report on the hacking of Qatar News Agency

  • Qatar’s Ministry of Interior is set to release a report on Thursday on the hacking of its official Qatar News Agency and government social media accounts. 

4:25am – Turkish Deputy PM urges Saudi Arabia to drop demands against Qatar

  • Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus called on Saudi Arabia to drop 13 demands it and other Arab states had made of Qatar, saying they represent an infringement on its sovereignty.
  • Speaking in an interview with the Qatar-based Al Jazeera broadcast on Wednesday, Kurtulmus also said: “The UAE must show a stand that is in favour of peace and a settlement and this is in its interest too, otherwise every conflict breeds conflict and no one knows the outcome.”
  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will visit Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar on July 23-24 as part of efforts to resolve the crisis.
  • Kurtulmus also said Turkey had no plans to shut its military base in Qatar, where a fresh contingent of troops arrived on Wednesday, saying it was not aimed against any of Qatar’s neighbours.
  • He also said that Turkey and Qatar were planning to conduct military exercises in coming days and that US forces may join in the exercises.

3:30am – US praises Qatar’s role in fight against ‘terrorism’

  • The US State Department praised Qatar’s “strong partnership” in the fight against “terrorism” in its annual “Country Reports on Terrorism” released on Wednesday.
  • The State Department said Doha had “maintained a strong partnership in the fight against terrorism in 2016 and collaborated to foster closer regional and international cooperation on counterterrorism, law enforcement and rule of law activities”.
  • Qatar, it added, has made “significant progress” in combatting terrorist financing but “terrorist financiers within the country are still able to exploit Qatar’s informal financial system”.
  • The Saudi-led group blockading Qatar accuse it of funding “terrorism”, an accusation Doha rejects as “baseless”.
  • The State Department also said that individuals and “entities” in Saudi Arabia had been channelling money out of the country to “terrorist” organisations but that: “Saudi Arabia continued to maintain a strong counterterrorism relationship with the United States”.
  • The report also mentioned that individuals have made use of the UAE as a financial hub to funnel money out of the country to “terrorist” groups, but that the UAE had increased its counterterrorism prosecutions.

11:15pm – Gulf’s reputation as haven of business stability ‘in jeopardy’, reports FT

  • Most Gulf nationals cannot now travel to or from Qatar; breaking up families and business ties, and dealing a blow to cross-border investments, reported the Financial Times on Wednesday.
  • Businesses say the embargo is causing uncertainty and confusion, and pushing up costs.
  • Contractors are shifting supply chains from the UAE to Oman, which has remained neutral in the dispute – although many can still move materials from the UAE to Qatar, albeit with extra precautions.
  • “The crisis has encouraged companies to think about restructuring to keep UAE and Qatar operations separate,” says one diplomat.
  • Qatari businesses are having to seek alternative sources for some building materials such as aggregate.
  • Mohammed Saleh’s business distributes building materials across the region – the crisis left Qatar-bound cargo stranded in Dubai. He had to take out a loan to pay his supplier, and lost £30,000: “One minute we are doing business with Qatar, the next we are told we are doing business with terrorist financiers,” he said. “It’s all so confusing.”

10:55pm – Qatar faults ‘disorganised’ conduct by Saudi-led group

  • A government official in Qatar has called the Saudi-led group’s conduct “dangerous” and “disorganised” after the four Arab nations modified their demands.
  • Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Bahrain called on Qatar on Wednesday to commit to six principles on combatting terrorism, instead of the 13 demands they had initially made.
  • Sheikh Saif Al Thani, director of Qatar’s government communications office, told the Associated Press news agency that the new demands are “another example of the dangerous and disorganised manner in which the illegal blockade has been conducted”. 
  • The four countries have regularly issued “conflicting statements and arguments,” he said.

7:55pm – Qatar Hajj pilgrims facing ‘obstacles’ 

  • The head of Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) said the Saudi government was putting obstacles against Qatari citizens who wished to perform the annual Hajj or Pilgrimage. 
  • Ali bin Smaikh al-Marri said Saudi Arabia is “inciting” its citizens against Qataris. He also said that Gulf states are rebuffing Qatar’s bid to ease humanitarian impact of the blockade. 

5:05pm – Qatar business lobby to assess blockade losses

  • The Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry has asked local companies to report any loss of earnings caused by the Saudi-led blockade of Doha. 
  • The business lobby said it would use the information “to take appropriate legal measures” to limit damage, and to help companies claim compensation for any losses. 

6:45am – Saudi-led group urges Qatar to accept six ‘principles’

  • Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the UAE are urging Qatar to commit to six ‘principles’ on combating “extremism” and “terrorism”, and to negotiate a plan with specific measures to implement them. 
  • Abdallah al-Mouallimi, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the UN, told reporters on Tuesday that the four countries are now committed to the six principles agreed on by their foreign ministers at a July 5 meeting in Cairo. 
  • Six ‘principles’: 
  • Commitment to combat extremism and terrorism in all their forms and to prevent their financing or providing havens.
  • Suspending all acts of provocation and speeches inciting hatred or violence.
  • Full compliance with the Riyadh Agreement of 2013 and the supplementary agreement and its implementation mechanisms of 2014 within the framework of the Gulf Cooperation Council.
  • Adherence to all the outcomes of the Arab Islamic American Summit held in May 2017 in Riyadh.
  • Refraining from interfering in the internal affairs of states and from supporting illegal entities.
  • The responsibility of all states of the international community to confront all forms of extremism and terrorism as a threat to international peace and security.
  • Mouallimi also said that the four Arab states believe that stopping incitement to violence is essential, but he said closing Al Jazeera might not be necessary.
  • “If the only way to achieve that is by closing down Al Jazeera, fine,” he said. “If we can achieve that without closing down Al Jazeera, that’s also fine. The important thing is the objective and the principle involved.”

6:30am – Qatar FM meets with Pakistan PM over Gulf crisis 

  • Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has expressed his support for the “efforts in finding a solution to the current crisis in the Gulf”, his office said on Monday. 
  • Sharif met with Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani in Islamabad on Monday to discuss the rift between Doha and four other Arab states. 

4:30am – Another US media outlet reports that the UAE played a role in Qatar hacking

  • Another US media organisation is reporting the United Arab Emirates played a role in the hacking of Qatar’s state news agency. The hack led to fake news being posted about the Qatari Emir.
  • NBC News has cited multiple US intelligence sources confirming a Washington Post article alleging the UAE was behind the attack.
  • The UAE denies involvement.

08:15pm – Qatar weighs seeking damages over Gulf blockade

  • Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani, Qatar’s economy minister, met on Tuesday with the heads of international trade organisations in Geneva to discuss the compensation.
  • Khalid bin Mohammed al-Attiyah, Qatar’s defence minister, also said the country may even go to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), also known as the World Court, in The Hague. 
  • Qatar has contracted a specialised legal team to study the actions taken by the blockading countries against it, according to a statement from the economy ministry.

06:15pm – Iran FM Zarif says Gulf divisions slowing ISIL fight

  • Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said divisions in the Gulf region are slowing down the fight against groups like the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS).
  • Speaking at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, Zarif also expressed hope that Iran and Saudi Arabia could one day set aside their difference and work together to end the war in Yemen. 
  • “Iran is a serious partner for all these countries in fighting our common enemy, because we believe at the end of the day, these extremist forces are as much as threat against us, but even more a threat against them,” Zarif said.

04:35pm – FIFA: No effort to take away 2022 World Cup

  • The international football federation has denied reports that there is an effort to strip Qatar of the 2022 World Cup.
  • In a statement to Al Jazeera, FIFA said: “The FIFA President has never received such a letter and subsequently has not made any comment on that.” 
  • Reuters earlier reported that a group of Arab nations have asked FIFA to take action against Qatar. The website designed to look like a Swiss news publication turned out to be fake and Reuters withdrew the story.

9:50am – Turkey’s Erdogan to visit Gulf next week

  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is expected to visit Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar on July 24-25, the president’s office said. 

9:45am – Al Jazeera: ‘Business as normal’ despite Gulf crisis

  • Giles Trendle, the acting general manager of Al Jazeera’s English-language service, said the channel is not going anywhere despite demands by Saudi Arabia and other Arab states to close it down. 
  • “Obviously it’s an unusual situation but it’s business as normal … we’re just getting on with our jobs,” Trendle said at London’s iconic Frontline Club on Monday. 

8:05am – Qatar: No right to ask for closing Turkish base

  • Khalid bin Mohamed al-Attiyah, Qatar’s defence minister, said no country has the right to call for the closure of the Turkish base in Doha.
  • In an interview with TRT, al-Attiyah said everyone knew about the Turkish base in Qatar a long time ago.
  • “Unfortunately, we did not choose the time to attack, besiege and boycott Qatar,” he said. 
  • The Saudi-led group “did choose the time so they cannot come and ask us to close a base where everybody knows about it from a long time back and this is considered a relation between two sovereign state countries”.

5am – Iran FM: Gulf dispute hampering fight against ‘terrorism’

  • Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said divisions in the Gulf region are hampering the fight against what he called “terrorism”.
  • While speaking at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, he also expressed hope that Iran and Saudi Arabia could one day work together to end the war in Yemen. 

10:20pm – Egypt ends visa-free entry for Qatari citizens

  • Egypt’s foreign ministry has announced the end of visa-free entry for Qataris – the latest measure taken against Doha in the Gulf crisis.
  • Qatari nationals will now have to apply for a visa in order to enter Egypt, the ministry said on Monday.
  • “It does not make sense to keep making exceptions for Qatar and giving it privileges in light of its current positions,” said Ahmed Abu Zeid, Egypt’s foreign ministry spokesman. 
  • The restriction will not affect spouses and children of Egyptian nationals, as well as Qatari nationals who are studying at Egyptian public universities, Abu Zeid said.

9:20pm – Libya’s UN-backed leader: Solving Gulf crisis will benefit Libya

  • Fayez Sarraj, the head of Libya’s UN-backed government, told Russia’s Sputnik that resolution of the Gulf crisis would “positively impact the situation in Libya” as the disputing countries have ties with rival forces in his country.
  • He said he hoped that “this situation between the Arab brothers will be resolved, the crisis will end, and inter-Arab reconciliation will replace it again”.

9:05pm – Egypt tells Kuwait it will keep sanctions against Doha

  • Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry has told his Kuwait counterpart that Egypt is standing by the list of demands it and three other Arab states made of Qatar and will keep sanctions against Doha in place until the demands are met.
  • Ahmed Abu Zeid, Egypt’s foreign ministry spokesman, said in a statement that the stance comes “in light of what the quartet states see as Qatar’s stalling and procrastination, and lack of concern for the concerns of the four states”.
  • Kuwait’s FM Sheikh Sabah al-Khalid al-Sabah met Shoukry and President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi in Cairo on Monday.
  • Sisi told Sabah he appreciated what Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al Sabah was doing to preserve Arab unity but that Egypt would not let anyone interfere in its affairs and would stand strong against policies that support terrorism, his spokesman Alaa Youssef said in a statement.

8:30pm – Report: Egypt tightens visa rules for Qatar’s citizens

  • Qatar’s citizens will no longer be able to receive visas upon arrival to Egypt, according to an official source at Cairo International Airport quoted by Egypt’s state-run Ahram Online publication.
  • The restriction coming into force on Wednesday will not affect spouses and children of Egyptian nationals, as well as Qatari nationals who are studying at Egyptian public universtities, the report said on Monday.
  • Those affected by the move, including holders of diplomatic or special passports, will have to apply for visas in advance from an Egyptian embassy abroad, said the source on condition of anonymity.
  • Egypt’s foreign ministry has not issued a statement regarding the changes.

4:35pm – Qatar: UAE violated international law by hacking QNA

  • Sheikh Saif bin Ahmed Al-Thani, the director of Qatar’s government communications office, said in a statement on Monday the “crime” of hacking its state news agency (QNA) by the United Arab Emirates was a violation of international law.
  • “The State of Qatar has long maintained that its government news agency website was hacked on 24 May and fabricated quotes published. The information published in the Washington Post on 16 July 2017, which revealed the involvement of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and senior Emirati officials in the hacking of Qatar News Agency, unequivocally proves that this hacking crime took place.”
  • “It is especially unfortunate that this shameful act of cyber terrorism is being attributed to a fellow member of the Gulf Cooperation Council”.
  • “This criminal act represents a clear violation and breach of international law and of the bilateral and collective agreements signed between the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council, as well as collective agreements with the Arab League, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, and the United Nations.”
  • “The Public Prosecutor will take all necessary legal measures to bring to justice the perpetrators and instigators of this crime, whether in Qatari courts or relevant international jurisdictions specialising in cybercrimes.”

11:45am – UAE minister denies any hacking of Qatar 

  • Anwar Gargash, the UAE’s state minister for foreign affairs, said his country was not responsible for any alleged hacking of Qatari websites. 
  • Gargash also said the UAE would not escalate its blockade on Qatar by asking companies to choose between doing business with it or Qatar. 

4:20am – UAE wants international monitoring of Qatar

  • “We need a regional solution and international monitoring,” said Anwar Gargash, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, in prepared remarks he was scheduled to deliver on Monday in London.
  • “We need to be certain that Qatar, a state with $300bn in reserves, is no longer an official or unofficial sponsor of jihadist and terrorist causes,” he said, giving no further detail on the proposed monitoring. Qatar strongly denies all allegations of supporting “terrorism”.
  • Gargash said the memorandum of understanding signed by the US and Qatar on Tuesday on the financing of terrorism was a positive development but fell short of allaying their concerns
  • “We do see signs now, however, that our pressure is working,” Gargash said. “We are ready for this process to take a long time.”

3:50am – UAE arranged hacking of Qatari media: Washington Post

  • The United Arab Emirates arranged for Qatari government social media and news sites to be hacked in late May in order to post false quotes linked to Qatar’s emir, prompting the Qatar-Gulf diplomatic crisis, the Washington Post reported on Sunday.
  • The Post reported that US intelligence officials learned last week of newly analysed information that showed that senior UAE government officials discussed the planned hacks on May 23, the day before they occurred.
  • The officials said it was unclear if the UAE hacked the websites or paid for them to be carried out, the newspaper reported. The Post did not identify the intelligence officials it spoke to for the report.
  • UAE Ambassador to the US Yousef al-Otaiba denied the report in a statement, saying it was “false”.

11:10pm – French FM urges ‘de-escalation’ in Gulf crisis

  • French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian called on Sunday for a “de-escalation” in the row between Qatar and four Arab countries, as he held talks in the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, a mediator in the crisis.
  • “It would be preferable if the parties could engage in a process of de-escalation, one that is indispensable so that negotiations can take place in a constructive atmosphere,” Le Drian said in Abu Dhabi.
  • He held talks with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahayan, who is also deputy commander in chief of the UAE’s armed forces.
  • Abu Dhabi was the last step in a tour of four Gulf nations that began on Saturday and also took Le Drian to Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

4:20pm – French top diplomat meets Kuwait’s Emir

  • Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al Sabah met his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian on Sunday in Kuwait city, according to Kuwait’s state news agency (KUNA).
  • Le Drian’s visit is part of his effort to resolve the dispute between Qatar and its neighbours which is mediated by Kuwait.

4:15pm – Expert: Qatar should join Rome Statute to protect itself

  • Toby Kidman, an expert in international law on war crimes, human rights, terrorism and extradition, said on Saturday that there was no legal basis for the blockade imposed on Qatar by Saudi Arabia and three other Arab states and for the list of demands presented by these countries.
  • Speaking to the Qatari daily Al-Sharq, Kidman said that under the international law the measure was illegal and they were purely punitive.
  • He said that the next legal step that must be taken by Qatar during the crisis was to join Rome Statute system and the International Criminal Court as a mean to protect itself.
  • Kidman said that the legal consequences might be stark and the situation might end in the UN Security Council.

11am – French FM arrives in Kuwait 

  • French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has arrived in Kuwait as he continues his efforts to end the Gulf crisis.
  • Le Drian was in Doha and Saudi Arabia on Saturday and is expected to travel to the United Arab Emirates later on Sunday.

11:45pm – Le Drian meets Saudi FM and Crown Prince

  • French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian met with his Saudi counterpart Adel Jubeir and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah late on Saturday.
  • “We look for everyone’s determined commitment against terrorism, its support and financing. In this perspective, it is important that GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) countries should be united, to remain a rampart against instability,” Le Drian said.
  • Jubeir said Saudi Arabia would present Le Drian with “comprehensive dossiers of the negative acts committed by Qatar over years”, adding that a similar file was given to US State Secretary Rex Tillerson.

8:15pm – Qatar’s rights agency chief holds meetings at UN head office

  • Ali bin Samikh Al Marri, the chairman of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), on Saturday met in New York City with Assistant UN Secretary-General for Human Rights Andrew Gilmour.
  • According to Qatar’s state news agency, Al Marri told Gilmour it was necessary to move swiftly to stop the deterioration of human rights violations that Qatar’s citizens and its residents were being subjected to.
  • He stressed on the importance of differentiating between humanitarian issues and politics because while the latter can eventually be resolved through diplomacy and mediation, violations of human rights cannot wait for political negotiations.
  • During his visit to the UN headquarters, Al Marri also held separate meetings with head of diplomatic missions of Switzerland, Argentina, Costa Rica, Ghana, Sweden and Liechtenstein, discussing the Gulf crisis and its implications.

4:35pm – Qatar’s Emir meets France’s top diplomat in Doha

  • Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Qatar’s Emir, met Jean-Yves Le Drian, the foreign minister of France, in the Qatari capital Doha on Saturday.
  • According Qatar’s state news agency, the Gulf crisis topped the agenda of the meeting.
  • Le Drian also held a meeting with Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani, Qatar’s prime minister and interior minister.

2:10pm – French FM concerned for humanitarian consequences of blockade, says crisis ‘is against everyone’s interest’

  • Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian renewed France’s commitment to helping reduce tensions in the Gulf, offering full support to Kuwait’s mediation efforts and stating that the spat is “not benefitting anyone and is against everyone’s interest”.
  • Speaking alongside his Qatari counterpart in Doha, Jean-Yves Le Drian said he was particularly concerned for separated, binational families, and for students whose education has been disrupted.
  • Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani welcomed France’s support, and again rejected claims Doha is supporting terrorism.
  • Samer Shehata, associate professor at the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies, said while few countries have leverage over Saudi Arabia, which is among the nations boycotting Qatar, those offering support “do add momentum to the argument that this should not become the new normal”.

11:00am – France and Qatar’s foreign ministers to hold talks in Doha

  • France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has arrived in Doha on a two-day Gulf tour aimed at easing tensions in the region. 
  • Le Drian is due to meet his Qatari counterpart Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani on Saturday. He will then travel to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.
  • The French foreign ministry said the trip was in line with similar strategies adopted by the US, Britain and Germany regarding the boycott of Qatar by its neighbours. 

2:40am – Trump: We will maintain good relations with Qatar

  • “We are going to have a good relationship with Qatar and not going to have a problem with the military base [in Qatar],” Trump said in an interview with CBN News aired on Wednesday.
  • Qatar is home to the Al-Udeid airbase that holds the forward headquarters of Central Command and hosts around 10,000 American troops.
  • “If we ever had to leave [the base], we’d have 10 countries willing to build us another one. And they’ll pay for it.”

12:20am – British navy vessel in Doha for joint exercise

  • The British navy vessel “HMS Middleton” arrived in Doha to participate in a joint naval exercise between Qatar’s Emiri Navy and the British Royal Navy in the Qatari territorial waters, according to Qatar’s defence ministry.
  • The ministry said the exercise came on the basis of prior agreements between the two sides in the framework of bilateral defence cooperation to support efforts of combating terrorism and smuggling as well as to maintain security and stability in the region.

9:20pm – Nasr al-Hariri: Gulf crisis has had no impact on Syria

  • A top Syrian opposition figure on Friday said that the dispute between Qatar and four key Arab countries has had no impact on the “revolution” aimed to oust Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
  • Nasr al-Hariri, the head of the Syrian opposition High Negotiations Committee, said the disputes between Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have with Qatar amount to “a problem in one family, in one house”.
  • He said the Syrian opposition has good ties with all the countries.
  • Speaking to reporters near the end of the latest intra-Syrian peace talks round under UN mediation in Geneva, Al-Hariri said he hoped the disputes “will be resolved soon without any impact on us”.

8:15pm – Trump, Saudi King discuss Qatar dispute

  • The White House said that US President Donald Trump spoke by phone to Saudi King Salman on Friday.
  • The two leaders discussed efforts to resolve the month-long dispute between Qatar and the four Arab states.

8pm – Erdogan meets Qatar’s FM in Ankara

  • Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met with Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani on Friday in the Turkish capital of Ankara.
  • According to Qatar’s state news agency, they discussed the Gulf crisis and bilateral relations among other topics.

3:35pm – Ankara, Doha say Turkish base will stay in Qatar

  • Turkey and Qatar on Friday reiterated Ankara would keep a new military base in the Gulf country, rejecting demands from Saudi Arabia and its allies for the facility to be closed.
  • “No country has the right to raise the issue of the Turkish base or the military cooperation between Qatar and Turkey as long as this cooperation respects international law,” Qatar Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani told reporters in Ankara.
  • Speaking after meeting him, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the demands to close the base go against the two countries’ sovereignty.
  • “A third country has no right to say something to Qatar or Turkey. Everyone must respect this,” he added.
  • Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hopes to visit the Gulf soon to discuss efforts to resolve the crisis, Cavusoglu said.

12:47pm – Qatar FM says Tillerson visit not a failure

  • Qatar’s foreign minister says it would be unfair to describe US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s shuttle diplomacy to find a solution as a failure, insisting that the crisis “cannot be solved in a day.”
  • Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani also told reporters in Ankara on Friday that Qatar would continue to work with the United States and Kuwait to end the standoff with its four Arab neighbors.
  • The Qatari minister again denied accusations that his nation provided support to terror groups, accusing the four of failing to provide “single evidence” against his gas-rich nation.

8:57am – Qatar FM to visit Turkey

  • Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani is expected to visit Turkey and meet with his counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
  • Turkey has shown support for Qatar during the GCC crisis, stepping in to send troops and food supplies following the blockade.
  • Qatar’s foreign minister is expected to hold a joint press conference in the morning with Cavusoglu.

3am – UAE says ‘headed for a long estrangement’ with Qatar

  • There will be no quick end to the Gulf crisis said the United Arab Emirates’ minister of state for foreign affairs on his official Twitter account on Friday.
  • “We are headed for a long estrangement … we are very far from a political solution involving a change in Qatar’s course, and in light of that nothing will change and we have to look for a different format of relations,” Anwar Gargash said.

2:05am – Egyptian coach suspended as row over Qatar reaches football

  • Egyptian coach Hossam el-Badry was fined $10,000 on Thursday by the Confederation of African Football and suspended for one game for refusing to give interviews to Qatar-based beIN Sports network – owned by Al Jazeera – and attempting to boycott a news conference.
  • El-Badry – coach of Egyptian club Al Ahly – initially refused to attend a news conference following a match on June 20 because of the presence of beIN sports journalists. He did eventually attend, but either put his hand over the beIN microphone while speaking or pushed it away, CAF said.
  • Following a game in Egypt last weekend against Cameroon’s Coton Sport, el-Badry and Al Ahly players refused all interviews with beIN. The players also boycotted the news conference.
  • El-Badry’s one-game ban was put on hold, provided he is not found guilty of a similar offence during the remainder of the African Champions League.

8:30pm – Turkey will stand by Qatar: Economy minister

  • Turkey will continue to meet Qatar’s daily and long-term needs through exporting necessary supplies, Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said.

8:20pm – UAE minister says demand to shut Al Jazeera dropped

  • In an interview with The Times, Noura al-Kaabi, the UAE minister for the federal national council, said the Emirates sought “fundamental change and restructuring” of Al Jazeera rather than to shut it. She also said that the Saudi-led group was ready to negotiate with Qatar.

6:45pm – HRW: Isolation of Qatar causing rights abuses

  • Human Rights Watch said the blockade imposed by Saudi Arabia and its allies is infringing on the right to free expression, separating families, and interrupting medical care among other rights violations. 
  • “Gulf autocrats’ political disputes are violating the rights of peaceful Gulf residents who were living their lives and caring for their families,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. 

5:55pm – GCC crisis lingers as Tillerson heads home

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has held a second round of talks with the leaders of Qatar on Thursday, but he left for the US without talking to the press. 

3:20pm – Tillerson meets with Qatari emir and foreign minister 

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has met the Qatari emir and foreign minister for the second time during his four-day visit to the Gulf.
  • According to Qatar News Agency, the meetings discussed the efforts to solve the Gulf crisis.

8am – Tillerson to make unexpected return to Qatar 

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is due to make an unexpected return visit to Doha on Thursday, as he tries to help find a solution to the Gulf crisis. 
  • The visit comes a day after he held talks with leaders from the four Arab states blockading Qatar. 
  • In his first trip to Doha on Tuesday, Tillerson told reporters that the Qatari government had “very reasonable” views in the dispute. 

5:50am – Bob Corker: Saudi terrorism support ‘dwarfs’ Qatar’s

  • “The amount of support for terrorism by Saudi Arabia dwarfs what Qatar’s doing,” said Bob Corker, the Chairman of the US Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee, on Wednesday.
  • “I was really disappointed to see what Saudi Arabia did after having a great summit and bringing everybody together,” he said – referring to the Riyadh summit in May attended by US President Donald Trump. “I think this is quite possibly a rookie mistake by a crown prince who I think could be the future for Saudi Arabia,” added Corker.
  • Corker made the comments about Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during a legislative hearing while addressing the former US ambassador to Israel.
  • Corker has the power to block arms sales to GCC countries – which he has previously threatened to do if the Gulf crisis is not resolved diplomatically.

3am – Rex Tillerson to travel to Qatar on Thursday

  • The US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will make an unexpected return visit to Doha on Thursday to meet with senior Qatari officials as he tries to find a solution to the Gulf crisis, according to the state department.
  • It comes after Tillerson held a day of talks with the four Arab states leading a blockade against Doha.

11:30pm – UAE accuses Al Jazeera of anti-Semitism, inciting hate

  • In a letter to the UN, the UAE’s state minister for foreign affairs, Anwar Gargash, accused Al Jazeera of having “promoted anti-Semitic violence by broadcasting sermons by the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, Yusuf al-Qaradawi”. 
  • The letter – published on Wednesday by the UAE National Media Council – also accused Al Jazeera of “incitement to hostility, violence and discrimination” and lists broadcasting the speeches of slain al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden as an example.
  • The United Nations has warned that demands on Qatar to close Al Jazeera by the Saudi-led group, which includes the UAE, violate basic freedoms.

04:35pm – Tillerson holding meetings in Saudi Arabia 

  • Foreign ministers of the four Arab countries boycotting Qatar began a meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Wednesday, as the US official seeks to find a solution for the Gulf dispute. 
  • The meeting brings together foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt with Tillerson in the Saudi Arabian coastal city of Jeddah, DPA news agency quoted the Saudi-owned TV network Al Arabiya as reporting.
  • Tillerson arrived in Jeddah earlier Wednesday and held a meeting with King Salman and Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir before the meeting, the official Saudi Press Agency reported.

03:40pm – French foreign minister to visit Gulf countries 

  • The French government has announced that Foreign Minister Jean-Yes Le Drian will be visiting Qatar as part of efforts to ease the tension in the Gulf. 
  • Reuters reported that Le Drian will also visit Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates during the trip scheduled on July 15 and 16.
  • “Concerned by current tensions that are affecting these countries with whom we have close and friendly ties, we call for a rapid de-escalation that would be in everyone’s interest,” the French foreign ministry statement said.

10:45am – Turkey sent nearly 200 cargo planes to Qatar since GCC crisis began 

  • Turkey has sent 197 cargo planes, 16 trucks and one ship to Qatar to meet its daily needs since a dispute broke out last month between Qatar and other Gulf states, Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said on Wednesday.
  • At a meeting with Zeybekci in the Turkish capital Ankara, Qatar’s economy minister, Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani, said Doha’s sea and land trade was continuing without disruption despite the blockade by four Arab states.

8:00am – Tillerson heads to Saudi Arabia to discuss Gulf crisis

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is expected to meet Saudi King Salman on Wednesday, before holding talks with his counterparts from Saudi Arabia and three other Arab states that have imposed a blockade on Qatar.
  • The visit to Jeddah follows meetings in Doha with Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani. 

7:00am – Qatar questions timing of Riyadh agreement leak

  • Qatar’s foreign minister has questioned the timing of the leak of a set of agreements made between Gulf countries between 2013 and 2014 and insisted that his country was abiding by the accords.
  • After CNN on Monday published a set of documents known as the “Riyadh agreements,” Qatari officials said the leak aimed to weaken mediation efforts in the region.
  • The documents were published ahead of US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s arrival in the Gulf for shuttle diplomacy between Jeddah, Doha and Kuwait City.
  • “These are clear efforts to diminish … the mediation by Kuwait, and the efforts of the United States to mediate this crisis,” Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said.

1:20am – More Turkish troops arrive at military base in Qatar

  • Qatar said on Tuesday more Turkish troops had arrived at a military base in Doha after Ankara fast-tracked legislation last month for more soldiers to be deployed there.
  • Training has been ongoing since June 19. The base in Qatar houses Turkish soldiers under an agreement signed in 2014.
  • “This defence cooperation between Doha and Ankara is part of their common defence vision to support anti-terrorism efforts and maintain security and stability in the region,” a statement by Qatar’s Armed Forces said.
  • The statement did not give the number of Turkish troops at the base or how many had just joined to bolster the deployment, but said it was the fifth batch of Turkish troops to arrive.

11:40pm – Qatar-US terror deal ‘insufficient’, says Saudi-led group 

  • Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain said the agreement on combatting terror funding between Qatar and the US was “insufficient”.
  • In a joint statement released in their state media, the four Arab states said they would “carefully monitor the seriousness of Qatari authorities” in fighting terrorism financing.
  • They also said sanctions on Doha would remain in place until it meets their demands.

9:25pm – Egypt wants Qatar out of anti-ISIL coalition 

  • The US-led coalition fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) should kick Qatar out of its operation, the spokesman of Egypt’s foreign ministry said during a coalition meeting held in Washington, DC. 
  • Egyptian foreign ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid, who is the head of the Egyptian delegation in the meeting, said it is “unacceptable” for the coalition “to have among its members states that support terrorism, or advocate for it in their media”. 
  • “The decision by Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain to boycott Qatar -a coalition member- is in accordance with that principle,” he said in a statement. 
  • Qatar hosts the largest US military airbase in the Middle East, Al-Udeid, where more than 11,000 US and coalition forces are deployed. The US-led operation is mostly launched from the Al-Udeid military base. 

7:35pm – Kuwaiti emir expresses ‘bitterness’ over Gulf crisis 

  • Kuwait’s ruler has described the rift in the Gulf as unprecedented, but said he intended to push ahead with mediation efforts, state news agency KUNA reported.
  • “His Highness the country’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah … expressed a feeling of bitterness and has been deeply affected by the unprecedented developments that [our Gulf house] is witnessing,” the agency said.
  • He said the positive reaction and support for Kuwait’s mediation efforts had strengthened his resolve to deal with the crisis.

4:30pm – Qatar signs MoU on ‘terror financing’ with the US

  • The Qatari FM and the US secretary of state say Qatar has signed a memorandum of understanding on combatting and financing “terrorism”.
  • Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani called the meetings with Rex Tillerson in Doha “very constructive”. He called on the countries blockading Qatar to also sign the MoU.
  • Tillerson said the US has one goal: “To drive terrorism off the face of the Earth.” 

4:20pm – FMs of boycotting nations to meet in Jeddah

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will meet the foreign ministers of the four countries leading the boycott against Qatar in Jeddah on Wednesday. He will then return to Kuwait before heading back to the US.

2:00pm – Tillerson calls Qatari position ‘reasonable’

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told reporters in the Qatari capital Doha on Tuesday it had “reasonable” views in the month-old diplomatic crisis with Arab neighbours.
  • “I think Qatar has been quite clear in its positions, and I think those have been very reasonable,” Tillerson told reporters. 

11:55am – Tillerson arrives in Qatar for talks on GCC crisis 

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has arrived in Doha for talks with Qatar’s emir and foreign minister.

10:00am – Tillerson due in Qatar to discuss Gulf crisis

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is set to hold talks with Qatar’s emir and foreign minister in Doha on Tuesday.  
  • The US State Department said Tillerson would meet with Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani at 8:30 GMT.
  • He will then hold talks with Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani. 

8:00am – Saudi-led bloc says Qatar violated Riyadh agreements

  • The Saudi-led bloc has accused Qatar of violating deals it signed in 2013 and 2014 with its Gulf neighbours, which prohibited support for opposition groups in those nations, as well as in Egypt and Yemen. 
  • The existence of the agreements has been known, but the content and the documents, which were obtained by CNN, were never made public.
  • The Gulf countries have accused Qatar of not complying with the agreements. “It is without doubt that Qatar did not abide by Riyadh Agreements of 2013-2014, violated it and broke promise,” Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain said in a statement.
  • Many of the demands that were recently made to lift the blockade against Qatar were already included in the Riyadh Agreements.

1:30am – US, UK and Kuwait call on all sides to swiftly end Gulf crisis

  • The United States, United Kingdom, and Kuwait urged all parties “to quickly contain the current crisis and resolve it at the earliest through dialogue,” according to a statement reported by the Kuwait state news agency KUNA on Tuesday.
  • The statement came as US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and British National Security Advisor Mark Sedwill visited Kuwait, which is acting as a mediator, in order to resolve the crisis.

11:35pm – ‘An issue that concerns not just us but the whole world’

  • “We are trying to resolve an issue that concerns not just us but the whole world,” Kuwait’s ruler, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Sabah, told US top diplomat Rex Tillerson.
  • US officials said Tillerson does not expect an immediate breakthrough, which they warned could be months away. Rather, they said, he wants to explore possibilities for sparking negotiations.  

7:30pm – US secretary of state lands in Kuwait

  • Rex Tillerson has arrived in Kuwait at the start of his four-day visit to the Gulf. He was greeted by the deputy emir, the foreign minister and other officials.
  • Tillerson is set to met Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah this evening as well as the foreign minister and the British national security adviser who is also in Kuwait for consultations on the Gulf crisis.  

6:05pm – Qatari rights committee backs compensation claims

  • Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee welcomes the establishment of the Compensation Claims Committee that aims to seek compensation for damages and losses resulting from the blockade. 
  • The NHRC says it will forward all complaints received from victims to the Compensation Committee. 

3:55pm – Qatar Petroleum, France’s Total to launch joint venture

  • State-owned Qatar Petroleum and French energy giant Total will formally launch a 25-year joint venture to develop the Al Shaheen oil field, the companies said.
  • The North Oil Company, to be launched on Tuesday, will be made up of a 70 percent stake from QP and a 30 percent stake from Total, which is taking over operations from Maersk Oil. The launch comes amid the worst crisis to hit Qatar, the world’s largest exporter of natural gas, in years.
  • The signing of the contract also comes amid reports that Saudi Arabia and the UAE may pressure international companies to either do business with them or with Qatar.

12:05pm – Qatar’s energy minister: LNG exports not affected by anti-Qatar quartet boycott

  • Energy Minister Mohammed al-Sada said that Qatar’s exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Japan, India, South Korea and China have not suffered as a result of a boycott by the four Arab states.
  • In a statement today, al-Sada said that exports to the four Asian countries accounted for nearly three quarters of the country’s total exports.
  • Exports to the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain accounted for less than eight percent, the statement said.

8:15am – Tillerson heads to Kuwait to help resolve GCC crisis

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is set to arrive in Kuwait today to help seek a resolution for the Gulf crisis.
  • In a statement, the US state department said that Tillerson will “meet with senior Kuwait officials to discuss the ongoing efforts to resolve the Gulf dispute”.
  • His meeting with Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah is scheduled for 16:15 GMT. 

6:30am – Qatar central bank says country has $340bn in reserves

  • Qatar has $340bn in reserves including holdings of its sovereign wealth fund that could help the Gulf country to weather the isolation by its powerful Arab neighbours, central bank governor Sheikh Abdullah bin Saoud Al Thani told CNBC.
  • “This is the credibility of our system, we have enough cash to preserve any…kind of shock,” he said.
  • Al Thani said the central bank has $40bn in reserves plus gold, while the Qatar Investment Authority has $300bn in reserves that it could liquidate.

6:05pm – ICC prosecutor expresses regret over anti-Qatar blockade

  • Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and the country’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani on Sunday held a meeting in Doha with Fatou Bensouda, chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
  • Among other topics, they discussed the Gulf crisis and the illegal anti-Qatar steps taken by Saudi Arabia and three other Arab states.
  • For her part, Bensouda expressed regret over the human rights violations committed by the quartet that imposed air, sea and land blockade against Qatar.
  • She praised Qatar’s mature way of dealing with the crisis.

4pm – Qatar Chamber chief: Unjust siege against Qatar affected blockading states more

  • Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani, the chairman of Qatar Chamber, said that the unjust siege imposed by Saudi Arabia and its allies on Qatar did not affect the country’s market as much as it hit the companies of those countries who lost the Qatari market.
  • He said that Qatar was able to immediately secure its needs of all kinds of goods by importing them from alternative countries at the same cost and with better quality.
  • Sheikh Khalifa highlighted the recent launch of direct shipping lines with Salalah and Sohar ports in Oman, Mundra and Nhava Sheva ports in India and the Turkish port of Izmir from which the first ship carrying about 3,000 tons of miscellaneous foodstuffs arrived last week. 

2pm – Qatar to seek compensation for damages from blockade

Qatari Public Prosecutor Ali Al Marri said in a press conference that the government is forming a committee to handle claims made by private companies, public institutions and individuals of damages stemming from the blockade.

10:35pm – UK’s top diplomat meets Qatar’s Emir

  • Boris Johnson, the foreign secretary of the United Kingdom, has met Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani at Al Bahr palace in Doha.
  • Among other topics, the two discussed the Gulf crisis as well as ways to enhance counter-terrorism cooperation between Qatar and the UK, according to Qatar’s state news agency.

9:15pm – UK’s foreign secretary arrives in Doha

  • British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has arrived in Qatar’s capital in an effort to mediate in the Gulf crisis.
  • He was met late on Saturday by Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani.

9:10pm – Erdogan criticises anti-Qatar measures

  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has criticised the sanctions against Qatar at a news conference on Saturday after the G20 meeting in Hamburg.
  • He said that allegations against Qatar are unfair and provocation in the Gulf region should be avoided.
  • Erdogan stressed that the countries involved in the standoff should work towards a reasonable solution of the conflict.

4:20pm – UK’s top diplomat in Kuwait to help mediate in the Gulf crisis

  • British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson arrived in Kuwait on Saturday to support the country’s mediation in the Gulf dispute.
  • Johnson planned to meet Kuwait’s foreign minister and other senior leaders, following talks on Friday with officials from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, his office said.
  • “The UK strongly supports Kuwait’s mediation efforts and the foreign secretary will pay tribute to the work of the Emir of Kuwait,” it said in a statement.
  • Johnson’s talks in Kuwait would be followed by similar meetings with senior leaders in Qatar later on Saturday.

11:55pm – Qatar port operating ‘at full capacity’ as usual

  • The head of Qatar’s main commercial port has said that it is operating “at full capacity” but that it has not seen an increase in traffic after the beginning of the blockade by Saudi Arabia and its allies. 
  • Abdulaziz Nasser Al-Yafei, Hamad Port director, said on Friday that the only change was that the Doha-bound ships were transiting through two Omani ports, rather than the Emirati Jebel Ali port – a regional hub. 

10pm – Qatar rejects Saudi-led group allegations

  • A source at Qatar’s foreign ministry said that accusations from the Saudi-led anti-Qatar quartet regarding financing “terrorism” and interference in internal affairs of other countries amount to defamation.
  • “The State of Qatar is an active member committed to combating terrorism and its financing at regional and international levels. The international community attests to that,” said the source.

9:15pm – UNESCO receives complaints from Qatari students in anti-Qatar Gulf states

  • National Human Rights Committee in Qatar has submitted a report to UNESCO detailing the violations committed by educational institutions against Qatari students in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
  • NHRC Chairman Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri said that violations against students included preventing them from taking final exams, withholding certificates of graduation, closing their educational accounts and arbitrarily terminating their registration without giving reasons.
  • At least 85 violations against Qatari students were committed in the UAE, 29 violations in Saudi Arabia and 25 in Bahrain, according to the report.

8:45pm – UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson arrives in Saudi Arabia

  • Boris Johnson arrived in Saudi Arabia on Friday as part of a tour that will also take him to Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait in a bid to help ease Gulf tension.
  • “The Foreign Secretary will urge all parties to get behind Kuwait’s mediation efforts, which the UK strongly supports, and work towards de-escalation and Gulf unity for the sake of regional stability,” the foreign office said in a statement.
  • The statement also said that Johnson will discuss security and bilateral issues with a “particular focus on working together to address the common threats of extremism, radicalisation and terrorism.”

7:30pm – Oman orders trade of Qatari Riyal at official rate

  • The Central Bank of Oman ordered all local commercial banks and exchange companies to trade the Qatari riyal at the official exchange rate.
  • “The Central Bank of Oman will also accept Qatari riyals and provide exchange services if needed,” the bank said in a statement.

7:20pm – ‘Qatar is rich enough to face threats of the blockade’

  • Qatar’s Finance Minister Ali Sharif al-Emadi said that his country is rich enough to withstand threats of bloackade. 
  • “We have sovereign wealth funds of 250 per cent of gross domestic product, we have Qatar Central Bank reserves, and we have a ministry of finance strategic reserve,” Emadi told The Times newspaper.

1:30pm – Mattis affirms US-Qatar cooperation: Pentagon

  • James Mattis, the US defence secretary, has reaffirmed the US’ strategic security partnership with Qatar, the Pentagon said, amid a diplomatic crisis in the Gulf.
  • Qatar hosts a vital US-led command center at the Al-Udeid air base, where the anti-ISIL coalition launches raids against the armed group.
  • Saudi Arabia is leading a four-country blockade of Qatar in the region’s biggest crisis in years. Mattis stressed the importance of de-escalating tensions “so all partners in the Gulf region can focus on next steps in meeting common goals,” the readout stated.

4:30am – Tillerson to travel to Kuwait

  • A US State Department statement late on Thursday said that US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will be travelling to Kuwait on Monday to discuss efforts to resolve the Gulf crisis.
  • Tillerson would visit Kuwait City following visits to Ukraine and Turkey and is expected to meet Kuwaiti officials who have been trying to mediate.

2am – Saudi-led group vows ‘appropriate’ measures

  • In a joint statement released late on Thursday, the Saudi-led group blamed Qatar for “continuing to seek to sabotage and undermine the security and stability in the Gulf region”.
  • “All political, economic and legal measures will be taken in the manner and at the time deemed appropriate to preserve the four countries’ rights, security and stability,” the statement said.

12:45am – US warns Gulf crisis could last for months

  • The US State Department warned that the Gulf crisis could “possibly even intensify”, Heather Nauert, spokeswoman for the state department, said on Thursday.
  • “We remain very concerned about that ongoing situation between Qatar and GCC countries.”

12:20am – Trump discusses Qatar-Gulf crisis with Angela Merkel

  • “President Donald Trump met Chancellor Angela Merkel in Hamburg, Germany, to coordinate on key policy areas ahead of Friday’s G20 summit,” a White House press release said. 
  • “The leaders conferred on a range of shared foreign and security policy priorities, including … de-escalating the conflict between Qatar and some of its Gulf and Arab neighbors.”

11pm – Qatar’s defence minister discusses Gulf crisis with US defence secretary

  • Qatar’s Defence Minister Khalid bin Mohammed Al Attiyah held a telephone conversation with US Secretary of Defense James Mattis on Thursday.
  • Attiyah discussed the Gulf crisis with Mattis and reiterated Qatar’s backing for the efforts of Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah to reach a resolution of the dispute through constructive dialogue, according to Qatar’s state news agency.
  • He also expressed Qatar’s appreciation for the US supportive stance for regional stability, stressing the depth of cooperation between the two countries in terms of combating and rejecting terrorism and violent extremism.

10:30pm – Egypt’s FM discusses Gulf crisis with Russian counterpart

  • Egypt’s foreign minister, Sameh Shoukry, held a phone conversation with Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on Thursday, discussing the dispute with Qatar. 
  • The foreign ministry of Egypt said Shoukry reiterated his country’s rejection of Qatar’s “support of terrorism” – the allegation that Doha denies.

10:10pm – US warns Qatar crisis could last for months

  • The US state department has warned that the Gulf crisis between Qatar and its neighbors is at an impasse and could potentially drag on for weeks or even months.
  • The United States believes the crisis could “possibly even intensify” said on Thursday Heather Nauert, the spokeswoman for the state department.
  • Nauert did not specify what type of escalation the US fears. But she said Secretary of State Rex Tillerson remains in close contact with the countries involved.
  • The US is praising Kuwait for trying to mediate a resolution, she said.

10pm – Tunisia’s former leader: Anti-Qatar bloc isolated itself

  • Former Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki has said he believed that besieging Qatar is the last weapon at the disposal of regimes that have been trying for years to limit Qatar’s role and prevent it from being a political player.
  • In an interview with Qatari daily Al Sharq published on Thursday, Marzouki said those who wanted to isolate Qatar were exposed and have themselves become isolated.
  • Marzouki said Qatar is on the right side and the whole world supports it and trusts its ability to withstand the crisis, stressing that the Arab peoples sympathise with Qatar and the vast majority of countries, particularly African ones, are on Qatar’s side.
  • He said the battle against Qatar won’t be the last, noting that other battles are “on the horizon and no one knows what third or fourth siege will hit any country” where a new Arab political regime rises.

6:45pm – Saudi Arabia accuses Qatar of using Twitter to stoke dissent

  • Saudi Arabia, which is leading a four-country blockade of Gulf neighbour Qatar, on Thursday accused Doha of being behind over 23,000 Twitter accounts it blames for trying to stoke dissent in Saudi Arabia.
  • “We found over 23,000 Twitter accounts driven by Qatar, some of them linked to accounts calling for ‘revolution’ in Saudi Arabia,” Information Minister Awwad Saleh al-Awwad told AFP news agency during a visit to Paris.

4:53pm – World-beating wealth props up Qatar against sanctions

  • A month after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt severed diplomatic, trade and transport ties with Qatar, accusing it of backing terrorism, it is suffering from isolation but is nowhere near an economic crisis, the Reuters news agency reports.
  • The alliance against it, meanwhile, may not have options to inflict further damage.
  • As the world’s top liquefied natural gas exporter, Qatar is so rich – at $127,660, its gross domestic product per capita in purchasing power terms is the highest of any country, according to the International Monetary Fund – it can deploy money to counter almost any type of sanction.
  • In the past month, it has arranged new shipping routes to offset the closure of its border with Saudi Arabia, deposited billions of dollars of state money in local banks to shore them up, and drawn the interest of some of the West’s biggest energy firms by announcing a plan to raise its LNG output 30 percent.
  • The success of these initiatives suggests Qatar could weather months or years of the current sanctions if it has the political will to do so – and that further sanctions being contemplated by the alliance may not prove decisive.

4:40pm – Energy giants seek role in Qatar’s gas expansion despite Gulf crisis

  • Three of the West’s biggest energy corporations are lobbying Qatar to take part in a huge expansion of its gas production, handing Doha an unintended but timely boost in its dispute with Gulf Arab neighbours.
  • The chief executives of ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell and France’s Total all met Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani in Doha before it announced a plan on Tuesday to raise output of liquefied natural gas (LNG) by 30 percent.
  • Company and industry sources told Reuters news agency that the CEOs had expressed interest in helping Qatar with its ambition to produce 100 million tonnes of LNG annually – equivalent to a third of current global supplies – in the next five to seven years.
  • Spokespeople from all three firms declined comment. However, a top executive from one energy major looking into expanding in Qatar said the huge business opportunity was worth the considerable political risk.

2:30pm – UN undersecretary Jeffrey Feltman in Doha

  • Qatar’s minister of state for foreign affairs, Sultan bin Saad Al Muraikhi, met with the United Nations undersecretary general Jeffrey Feltman in Doha. 
  • During the meeting, Feltman expressed the UN’s concern about the continuation of the Gulf crisis. He also stressed UN support of the Kuwaiti mediation efforts to solve the crisis. 

10:20am – Germany to help clear up Qatar accusations

  • Germany’s foreign minister says his country’s intelligence service will participate in efforts to clear up accusations by Arab neighbours that Qatar supports “terror groups”.
  • Gabriel told Deutschlandfunk radio Thursday there was an agreement for Qatar to “open all its books” to Germany’s intelligence service “if we have questions about certain people or structures”.
  • The minister said he no longer sees the risk of a military escalation in the standoff despite an angry reaction on Wednesday from the four Arab nations to Qatar’s response to their demands. Gabriel said that, while the reaction sounded harsh, many demands were no longer mentioned. 

8am – Watch: What’s next in the gulf crisis

  • Al Jazeera’s Senior Political Analyst Marwan Bishara projects scenarios on the ongoing Gulf crisis.
  • There are limited choices for the four countries that are blockading Qatar as the military option appears to be off the table and diplomatic pressure on Qatar will split the Gulf Cooperation Council, he says. 

7:45pm – Turkey’s Erdogan underlines support for Qatar

  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has underlined his country’s support for Qatar and its anger at the demand for the closure of a Turkish military base in Doha. He said the demand shows “a lack of respect toward us and Qatar”.
  • Erdogan told the German weekly Die Zeit on Wednesday that “what is being done with Qatar runs counter to international law”. 

6:15pm – Saudi-led bloc voices regret over Qatari reply to demands

  • Four Arab states imposing a partial blockade against Qatar have voiced “regret” over Doha’s “negative reply” to their demands, according to a joint statement.
  • The statement was issued after the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain met in Cairo.
  • Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said at a joint press conference that further steps against Qatar will be taken at the appropriate time in line with the international law.
  • He added that economic boycott against Qatar will remain until the country changes its policies for the better.
  • The minister also said he hoped that Turkey remained neutral in the crisis, while he called Iran “the biggest supporter of terrorism”.

6:15pm – Trump calls Egypt’s Sisi over Gulf crisis

  • US President Donald Trump has called Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to discuss the ongoing dispute between Qatar and its Arab neighbours, according to the White House. 
  • Trump urged Egypt and other countries that imposed a blockade on Qatar “to negotiate constructively to resolve the dispute”.
  • Trump “reiterated the need for all countries to follow through on their commitments at the Riyadh Summit to stop terrorist financing and discredit extremist ideology”, the statement said. 

5:25pm – Kuwait FM meets German counterpart

  • Kuwait’s First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al Hamad Al Sabah met on Wednesday with the visiting German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel. 
  • The foreign minister lauded Germany’s support of Kuwait’s mediation in resolving the regional crisis. For his part Gabriel reiterated his country’s support of Kuwait, while urging restraint in order to reach a solution that satisfies all parties.

3:05pm – Qatar FM calls for dialogue to resolve Gulf Crisis

  • Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, Qatar’s foreign minister, said his country is going to do “whatever it takes to protect our people”, even as he urges more dialogue to resolve the crisis. 
  • Sheikh Mohammed said that whatever Saudi Arabia and its allies take against Qatar should be based in international law.

3:55am – Saudi-led group confirms receiving Qatar’s response

  • “The four countries have received the Qatari response via Kuwait before the end of the additional deadline, which came at the request of HH Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, the Emir of Kuwait,” said Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, and Egypt in a joint statement on Wednesday.
  • “Qatar will receive a reply in due time,” added the statement, which was reported by the Saudi News Agency.

1:05am – Arab intelligence chiefs meet in Cairo

  • Heads of intelligence from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain held a meeting in Cairo on Tuesday, Egyptian state news agency MENA said.
  • MENA, citing “informed sources”, did not provide details of the meeting, which took place one day before foreign ministers from the four countries were due to meet to discuss the Gulf dispute.

12:13am – AU chair says Saudi FM’s Ethiopia visit not related to GCC crisis

  • Adel al-Jubeir, Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, unexpectedly attended a summit of African Union (AU) leaders in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa.
  • When asked about Jubeir’s visit, Alpha Conde, the AU chairperson, insisted the Saudi diplomat’s trip was not an attempt to shore up support for a Saudi-led embargo against Qatar.
  • “No, he didn’t come here to discuss the crisis in the GCC,” Conde said, using an acronym for the Gulf Cooperation Council. “He came to discuss cooperation because Africa is against financing terrorism. We want to eradicate all sorts of terrorism. This is why we said we will cooperate with Kuwait in mediating this [Gulf] crisis.”

11:02pm – Qatar FM: List of demands unrealistic and not actionable

  • Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, Qatar’s foreign minister, said “the fight against terrorism” is “a top priority” for his country.
  • “It is an issue of national security, not only to the state of Qatar but to the entire region,” he told reporters in Qatar’s capital, Doha, after a meeting with Sigmar Gabriel, his German counterpart.
  • “However, the unjust siege imposed by the other states under the pretext of combating terrorism is totally false and fabricated,” he added
  • The Qatari diplomat also said that the demands put to Doha by Saudi Arabia and its allies were impossible to meet.
  • “The list is unrealistic and is not actionable,” he said. “It’s not about terrorism, it’s talking about shutting down the freedom of speech.”

8:20pm – Gabriel: Qatar’s sovereignty must be respected

  • The foreign minister of Germany praised Qatar’s “restraint” in responding to a blockade imposed by Arab states amid the worst regional diplomatic crisis in years.
  • “There are boundaries that you should not cross, that the sovereignty of each of country and the respect of this national sovereignty has to be there,” Sigmar Gabriel told reporters in the Qatari capital, Doha, after a meeting with his Qatari counterpart, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani.
  • “It has to be a basic condition and when that is there, even the most difficult questions can be talked about,” added Gabriel, concluding a tour of the Gulf region, which also included stops in Saudi Arabia and the United Aran Emirates. 

5:10pm – German FM in Qatar for Gulf crisis talks

  • Sigmar Gabriel, Germany’s foreign minister, is visiting Qatar as part of a Gulf tour to resolve the regional diplomatic crisis.
  • He is talking to journalists along with his Qatari counterpart, Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, in Qatar’s capital, Doha. Here are some excerpts from the press conference.
  • German FM: Gulf disunity could weaken entire region
  • German FM: Sovereignty of all nations needs to be respected
  • German FM: Best solution to Gulf crisis is deal to end support for armed groups
  • German FM: Would be good if other Gulf states accepted the invitation to dialogue. Conflicts like this can only be resolved at the negotiating table
  • German FM: There are plenty of ways to prevent the crisis escalating
  • Qatar FM: We are fully prepared to engage in dialogue and examine grievances
  • Qatar FM: Enough with the smear campaign and false accusations

12:30pm – UAE says it is still waiting on Qatar response to demands

  • UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdulla bin Zayed Al Nahayan said that the Arab countries blockading Qatar were still waiting for a response to their demands via mediator Kuwait
  • “I think it is premature to talk about extra sanctions … this depends on what we will hear from our brothers in Kuwait,” the foreign minister said at a press conference with his German counterpart in Abu Dhabi.  

12:15pm – German FM sees Gulf standoff as chance to tackle ‘terror finance’

  • German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said the entire Gulf region has the opportunity to strengthen the fight against “terrorism funding”.
  • Gabriel is meeting officials in Abu Dhabi, before travelling to Doha to meet Qatar’s foreign minister later on Tuesday.

11:15am – Qatar Petroleum CEO: Company ‘will not be affected’ by crisis

  • The CEO of state-run Qatar Petroleum has said the company “will not be affected by the siege”. 
  • Saad al-Kaabi was speaking at a press conference on Tuesday where he announced the company would be increasing its natural gas output by 30 percent by 2024.

7:00am – UK’s May calls for ‘de-escalation’ of GCC crisis in call with Saudi crown prince

  • In a phone call with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, British Prime Minister Theresa May urged “all sides” of the ongoing crisis to “take urgent steps to de-escalate the situation and restore [GCC] unity”, her office said in a statement on Monday.
  • The statement also said that the “UK remains committed to supporting this process.”  

10:46pm – Emir of Qatar speaks to Macron, to visit France in late summer

  • France’s President Emmanuel Macron has held a phone conversation with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani to discuss the situation in the Gulf.
  • “During this telephone exchange, the emir said that in view of the situation, he expected to come to France at the end of summer,” a statement by Macron’s office said. 
  • The two leaders stressed the need to resolve the Gulf crisis through dialogue and diplomatic means, as well as back the mediation efforts of Kuwait, Qatar News Agency said in a statement.

8:55pm – Saudi FM: Hope for ‘positive response’ from Qatar

  • Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said that he hopes Qatar will respond positively to a list of demands put forth by his country and other Arab states.
  • “We hope for a positive response to be able to resolve the crisis,” he said from the Saudi city of Jeddah during a press conference with his German counterpart Sigmar Gabriel.
  • Jubeir also said that Qatar’s response will be “examined with precision”.
  • The talks between the two foreign ministers focused on “the necessity of putting an end to the support for terrorism, extremism, and calls for hate and interference in the affairs of others”, Jubeir said.

8:15pm – German FM: Arab states not questioning Qatar’s sovereignty 

  • Sigmar Gabriel, Germany’s foreign minister, said he did not have the impression that the Arab states that have cut ties with Doha were questioning the sovereignty of Qatar.
  • He was speaking at a joint press conference with his Saudi counterpart Adel al-Jubeir in the Saudi city of Jeddah, during a tour of the Gulf region.
  • Gabriel said that the best way to solve the stand-off between Qatar and its Arab neighbours would be an agreement across the region to prevent the financing of “terrorism”.

5:54pm – Turkey: Linking Qatar base with Gulf crisis is wrong

  • Numan Kurtulmus, Turkey’s deputy prime minister, says the ongoing crisis in the Gulf has nothing to do with the Turkish military base in Qatar.
  • “Turkey’s military base in Qatar is not just for Qatar’s security, but for the security of the whole [Gulf] area. Turkey has a base there as part of the area’s safety. The presence of Turkish soldiers will remain,” he told reporters following a cabinet meeting in the capital, Ankara.
  • “Linking the [Gulf] crisis with the Turkish base is wrong. The tension and dispute between the Gulf countries is completely irrelevant [to the base].”

4:14pm – AU chair calls for peaceful resolution of Gulf crisis

  • Alpha Conde, the chairperson of the African Union and president of Guinea, has called for a peaceful end of the Gulf diplomatic dispute.
  • Conde was speaking at the opening of the 29th African Union summit in the Ethiopian capital, Adis Ababa.
  • He also said Africans must have one voice about the crisis.

12:00pm – Qatar hosted Hamas and Taliban delegations at the ‘request’ of the US 

  • Former CIA director and retired general David Petraeus has said Qatar hosted delegations from both Hamas and the Taliban at the “request” of the US.
  • “Our partners should remember that Qatar – at our request – welcomed delegations from the Taliban and Hamas, and that Qatar is now home to our military headquarters for our operations throughout the Middle East,” Petraeus told French newspaper Journal du Dimanche.

11:00am – Qatar FM arrives in Kuwait to hand over response to list of demands

  • Qatar’s Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani has arrived in Kuwait to hand over the state’s response to the 13 demands from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the UAE. 
  • The response will be the focus of a meeting in Cairo on Wednesday of foreign ministers from the four countries that have cut ties with Qatar. 

6:10am – Trump speaks to Gulf leaders, urges ‘unity’ 

  • US President Donald Trump spoke separately to Saudi Arabia’s King Salman and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan on Sunday to discuss his “concerns about the ongoing dispute” between Qatar and its Gulf neighbours.
  • Trump also underscored that unity in the region is critical to accomplishing the Riyadh Summit’s goals of defeating “terrorism” and promoting regional stability, the White House said. 

4:55am – Trump calls Qatar’s Emir to discuss crisis

  • US President Donald Trump rang the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani on Sunday night, reported the Qatar News Agency (QNA). The phone call dealt with the latest developments of the GCC crisis and its implications in the region.
  • The call also reviewed the American position, as well as international stances regarding the crisis, which call for dialogue and diplomacy in order to maintain the security and stability of the region, reported the QNA.
  • The two sides also stressed the importance of continuing their efforts and support to regional and international efforts for combatting “terrorism” and “extremism” in all its forms, regardless of its source or motives.
  • The two sides also reviewed the strategic bilateral ties between the two nations and the means to enhance and develop them.

4:03am – Germany urges ‘serious dialogue’ to resolve Qatar crisis

  • German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, who on Monday starts a tour of several Arab states, called for “serious dialogue” to end the Gulf crisis.
  • “We are worried that the distrust and the disunity could weaken all the parties concerned as well as the entire peninsula,” said Gabriel, who will visit Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
  • Gabriel called for a “serious dialogue between the parties” to resolve the crisis, adding that while Berlin was “not taking sides, the conflict… affects both us and our interests.”

2:55am – Saudi-bloc agrees to give Qatar 48 more hours to accept demands

  • Saudi Arabia and three allies boycotting Qatar have agreed to a request by Kuwait to extend by 48 hours Sunday’s deadline for Doha to comply to a set of demands, according to a joint statement on Saudi state news agency SPA.
  • Kuwait had received a response by Qatar to list of 13 demands imposed on it by a Saudi-led bloc of Arab countries, state news agency KUNA said on Monday.
  • After more than two weeks, the four countries gave Doha a 10-day ultimatum, which expired on Sunday night, to comply with a 13-point demand list in exchange for the end of the anti-Qatar measures.

2:30am – Kuwait seeks extension of deadline for demands on Qatar

  • Kuwait has received a response by Qatar to list of 13 demands imposed on it by a Saudi-led bloc of Arab countries, state news agency KUNA said on Monday, but has asked those countries to extend a deadline for compliance by forty-eight more hours.
  • Without stating whether Qatar had rejected the ultimatum as was widely expected, KUNA said Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah asked Saudi Arabia and three other countries that have boycotted Qatar to grant it an extension. Kuwait is mediating in the crisis.

12:07am – FMs from Saudi-led bloc to discuss Gulf dispute on Wednesday

  • The foreign ministers of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain will meet in the Egyptian capital of Cairo on Wednesday to discuss the Gulf diplomatic crisis.
  • “At the invitation of Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, there will be a quartet meeting of the foreign ministers of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain in Cairo on Wednesday July 5 to follow up on the developing situation regarding relations with Qatar,” Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid said in a statement.
  • The four Arab countries cut diplomatic and travel ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting “terrorism” and being an ally of regional rival Iran, charges that Doha denies.

Qatar-Gulf crisis: All the updates – Week 1 (June 5-11)

Qatar-Gulf crisis: All the updates – Week 2 (June 12-18)

Qatar-Gulf crisis: All the updates – Week 3 (June 19-25)

Qatar-Gulf crisis: All the updates – Week 4 (June 26-July 2)

10:55pm – Qatar-based websites were briefly unblocked in Saudi Arabia

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies
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