Gulf nations cut Qatar air link

Gulf nations cut Qatar air link, by AP.

Four Gulf states have cut diplomatic ties with neighbouring Qatar and kicked it out of a military coalition, less than a month after US President Donald Trump visited the region to cement ties with powerhouse Saudi Arabia.

In the region’s most serious diplomatic crisis in years, Qatar’s Gulf neighbours Riyadh, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates as well as Egypt all announced they were severing ties with gas-rich Qatar, which will host the 2022 soccer World Cup.

Arab League nations v Qatar: How it all started, by RT.

Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Yemen have cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism. Riyadh also accused Qatar of supporting Iranian-backed militants. …

Qatar has long faced criticism over its alleged support of Islamists, including the Sunni Islamist political group the Muslim Brotherhood, which has been outlawed by both Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE)….

Saudi Arabia also accused Qatar of collaborating with Iran-backed militias in the largely Shiite eastern region of Qatif, and also in Bahrain. However, Qatar has previously denied ties to Tehran.

Qatar has adamantly denied that it funds extremist groups, despite claims from its regional neighbors and Western officials. However, it remains a major financial patron of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip and has been the home of exiled Hamas official Khaled Mashaal since 2012. …

The decision to cut ties with Doha comes just weeks after comments published by the website of Qatar’s state-run QNA news agency – allegedly from Qatar’s ruling Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani – featured negative remarks about Saudi Arabia.

Qatar’s Gulf Arab neighbors responded with anger, blocking Qatari media. The Doha-based Al Jazeera was among the media outlets which were banned.

Qatar, however, claims that hackers took over the media outlet’s website and published the comments, which it says were fake.

Clinton’s charity confirms Qatar’s $1 million gift while she was at State Dept, by Jonathon Allen.

The Clinton Foundation has confirmed it accepted a $1 million gift from Qatar while Hillary Clinton was U.S. secretary of state without informing the State Department, even though she had promised to let the agency review new or significantly increased support from foreign governments.

What diplomatic rift means for Qatar Airways, by Nicolas Parasie.

Qatar’s rift with its Arab neighbours threatens to hit one of the tiny Gulf state’s economic arteries: air transport.

Airlines from the United Arab Emirates — including heavyweights Emirates Airline and Etihad Airways — Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt suspended flights to Doha yesterday, hours after their countries announced they were cutting diplomatic, air and maritime links to Qatar. …

However, the flight suspensions are a major blow for state-owned, flag carrier Qatar Airways, which relies on shuttling passengers from larger nearby countries like Saudi Arabia across its network of more than 150 destinations. …

Routes to Europe and the US (including to and from Australia) should be largely unaffected, although passengers looking to fly via Doha to other Middle Eastern destinations may be forced to make alternative arrangements.

Qatar: Muslim Brotherhood, Al Jazeera, and Hillary Clinton’s private  slush fund. Marvelous.

Direct Perth-London flights on the new 787’s mean we don’t need the Gulf airlines anymore to fly to Europe.

 hat-tip Stephen Neil