UAE said to be behind hacking of Qatari websites

Evrard Martin
Juillet 17, 2017

The four Arab countries cut ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting "extremism and terrorism", an allegation which Qatar has denied.

France is looking to throw its weight behind Kuwait-led mediation between Qatar and the four Arab countries boycotting it, Jean-Yves Le Drian said before meeting the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces.

A French diplomatic source in Paris said that Le Drian would try "to recreate confidence, create an interest of all parties to engage in de-escalation".

But Ghandour dismissed these reports, saying Sudan is adhering to its reconciliatory stance on the Gulf crisis and calls for a solution through the Kuwaiti mediation.

Tillerson's visit comes on the heels of a string of official visits to the region, including United Nations diplomats and the foreign ministers of Britain, Germany and Oman.

Some reports said Saturday that Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Mauritania, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt had collectively written to FIFA asking it to remove Qatar as hosts under Article 85 of the FIFA Code, which allows for such action in emergency cases.

The refinancing of a $1 billion loan by Doha Festival City, a retail and hospitality complex in Qatar, has been indefinitely postponed as a diplomatic crisis deters regional banks from doing new Qatari business, bankers said.

They also presented the emirate with a list of 13 demands with which to comply to end the worst political crisis in the region for years.

Qatar hosts al-Udeid Air Base, the largest USA military installation in the Middle East and hub for US -led operations against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

Tillerson will shuttle between Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia from Monday to Thursday in what is the first serious intervention by Washington in the Gulf crisis.

"We can't have well off nations funding terrorism", Trump said in Wednesday's interview.

Gargash hailed Qatar's decision last week to sign a memorandum of understanding on terrorist financing with the U.S. as "a positive development" by the foreign minister.

Mr Tillerson said that taking "some of these issues off the table" could create an opening to more meaningful talks between the Gulf neighbours, but "the final and ultimate resolution may take quite a while".

About France's position on the Qatar crisis, he said it consists of a number of points, including the firm commitment of all to fight terrorism, and stand against those who support and finance terrorism, stressing the need for the GCC countries to stay united as an impenetrable barrier against terrorists.

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