World Qatar FM: We won't negotiate until blockade is lifted

19:16  19 june  2017
19:16  19 june  2017 Source:   Al Jazeera

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Qatar said it would rely on other states like Iran and Turkey if the embargo continues [Reuters]© Provided by Al Jazeera Qatar said it would rely on other states like Iran and Turkey if the embargo continues [Reuters]

Qatar will not negotiate with Arab states that have cut economic and travel ties with it unless they reverse their measures and lift the blockade, its foreign minister said, ruling out discussions over Qatar's internal affairs including Al Jazeera TV.

"Qatar is under blockade, there is no negotiation. They have to lift the blockade to start negotiations," Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani told reporters in Doha on Monday.

"Until now we didn't see any progress about lifting the blockade, which is the precondition for anything to move forward."

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“ Qatar is under blockade , there is no negotiation . They have to lift the blockade to start negotiations ,” he told reporters. “ Until now we didnt’ see any progress about lifting the blockade , which is the precondition for anything to move forward.”

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Sheikh Mohammed said Qatar had still not received any demands from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, which severed relations two weeks ago, triggering the worst Gulf Arab crisis in years.

Anything that relates to the affairs of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council is subject to negotiation, he said, referring to the body comprising Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman.

"Anything not related to them is not subject to negotiation. No one has the right to interfere in my affairs. Al Jazeera is Qatar's affairs, Qatari foreign policy on regional issues is Qatar's affairs. And we are not going to negotiate on our own affairs," he said.

He said Kuwait's ruler was the sole mediator in the crisis and that he was waiting for specific demands from Gulf states in order to take resolution efforts forward.

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" Until now we didn' t see any progress about lifting the blockade , which is the precondition for anything to move forward." Al Jazeera is Qatar 's affairs, Qatari foreign policy on regional issues is Qatar 's affairs. And we are not going to negotiate on our own affairs," he said.

"We cannot just have (vague) demands such as 'the Qataris know what we want from them, they have to stop this or that, they have to be monitored by a foreign monitoring mechanism,'" Sheikh Mohammed said.

The crisis has hit civilian travel, some food imports, ratcheted up tensions in the Gulf and sown confusion among businesses. But it has not affected energy exports from Qatar, the world's biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG).

Sheikh Mohammed said Qatar would rely on other states if the boycott continued, including Saudi Arabia's arch regional foe Iran.

"We have a back-up plan which depends mainly on Turkey, Kuwait and Oman," he said.

"Iran has facilitated for us the sky passages for our aviation and we are cooperating with all countries that can ensure supplies for Qatar."

Qatar hits out at neighbors as Arab rift enters third week .
Qatar hit out on Monday at four Arab nations for cutting diplomatic ties and transport links over Doha's alleged support for terrorism, accusing them of a "publicity stunt" aimed solely at attacking its image and reputation. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut ties with Qatar on June 5 in the worst diplomatic crisis in the region in years."The blockade has been ongoing for two weeks and the blockading nations have offered no formula for resolving the crisis," Sheikh Saif Bin Ahmed al-Thani, Director of Qatar's Government Communications Office, said in a statement.

Source: http://us.pressfrom.com/news/world/-60345-qatar-fm-we-wont-negotiate-until-blockade-is-lifted/

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