Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Cancel Anytime
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

Qatar's foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, right, and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson sign a memorandum of understanding in Doha on July 11, 2017.

NASEEM ZEITOON/Reuters

Four Arab nations that cut ties with Qatar urged the tiny Gulf nation Tuesday to commit to six principles on combatting extremism and terrorism and negotiate a plan with specific measures to implement them – a step that could pave the way for an early resolution of the crisis.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain broke diplomatic relations with Qatar in early June largely over their allegations that it supports terrorist and extremist groups – a charge Qatar rejects. They initially made 13 demands, which Qatar also dismissed.

Saudi Arabia's U.N. Ambassador Abdallah Al-Mouallimi told a briefing for a group of U.N. correspondents that the four nations are now committed to the six principles agreed to by their foreign ministers at a meeting in Cairo on July 5, and hope Qatar will support them as well.

Story continues below advertisement

The principles include commitments to combat extremism and terrorism, prevent financing and safe havens for such groups, and suspend all acts of provocation and speeches inciting hatred or violence.

Opinion: The Qatar standoff is about gas, not politics

Al-Mouallimi said the four-nation quartet thinks it "should be easy for the Qataris to accept" the six principles. He stressed that implementation and monitoring must be "essential components," and "there will be no compromise when it comes to principles."

But he said both sides can talk about details of "the tactics" and "the tools" to implement them – "and that's where we can have discussion and compromise."

The Saudi ambassador explained that the initial 13 points included some principles and some tools to achieve compliance.

Mixed in the 13 points were what Western nations might see as fair demands, such as cracking down on support for extremists and curbing ties with Iran, and tougher-to-swallow calls to shut down the Al-Jazeera television network – one of Qatar's best-known brands – and kick out troops from NATO member Turkey, which has a base in Qatar.

Al-Mouallimi stressed that stopping incitement to violence is essential, but he said closing Al-Jazeera might not be necessary.

Story continues below advertisement

"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."

UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation Reem Al Hashimy said all the countries involved have strong relations with the United States "and we believe that the Americans have a very constructive and a very important role to play in hopefully creating a peaceful resolution to this current crisis."

President Donald Trump has sided strongly with Saudi Arabia and the UAE in the dispute, publicly backing their contention that Qatar is a supporter of Islamic militant groups and a destabilizing force in the Middle East.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson recently concluded several days of shuttle diplomacy and sealed a deal to intensify Qatar's counterterrorism efforts. The memorandum of understanding signed by the U.S. and Qatar lays out steps Qatar can take to bolster its fight against terrorism and address shortfalls in policing terrorism funding.

Al Hashimy called the MOU "an excellent step."

"We'd like to see more of that," she said. "We'd like to see stronger measures taken and stronger commitment made to address that."

Story continues below advertisement

Al Hashimy said "at this stage the ball is in Qatar's court."

"We're looking for a serious change in behaviour, serious measures," she said. "No more talk."

Qatar has further escalated the situation by encouraging Turkey's military presence, Al Hashimy said.

"We do not want to see a military escalation of any kind," she said. "We hope to be able to resolve this internally and among ourselves with the assistance of strong mediation, whether it's from the U.S. or the Kuwaitis."

Al-Mouallimi stressed that Qatar's future lies with its neighbours not with "faraway places," a clear reference to Turkey and Iran which are supporting Doha.

"Our Turkish brothers need to recognize that the era of covert and to some extent unwanted intervention in the Arab world has long gone," he said. "If Turkey wants to play a constructive role they are welcome to do so, but trying to find the role through military bases or military intervention would not be productive, and would not fare well for Turkey's reputation in the Arab world."

Story continues below advertisement

Diplomats from the four countries who attended the briefing said there have been discussions about possible next steps.

UAE Ambassador Lana Nusseibeh said that "if Qatar is unwilling to accept core principles around what defines terrorism or extremism in our region, it will be very difficult" for it to remain in the Gulf Cooperation Council with Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain.

"So it may be a parting of ways for a little while in order to work things out," she said.

Al-Mouallimi said the quartet briefed the 10 elected Security Council members Tuesday and hopes to meet the permanent members as well.

There are no plans to take the dispute to the U.N.'s most powerful body, he said, but "if we develop the conviction that that is a necessary move forward, then we will do so."

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies