Alwaght- Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani has boycotted an Arab League summit in neighboring Saudi Arabia amid worsening tensions between the two Persian Gulf nations.
Qatar’s state news agency said on Sunday that Doha’s permanent representative to the Arab League, Saif bin Muqaddam al-Buainain, will represent the Qatari delegation to the Saudi-hosted summit. The report did not elaborate why the decision was made, but it showed that a nearly year-old dispute between Qatar on one side and Arab neighbors in the Persian Gulf region is still a long way from being resolved.
Saudi ruler King Salman addressed the opening session of the summit on Sunday in eastern Saudi city of Dhahran.
The decision also comes right after Sheikh Tamim returned from a trip to Washington where he rejected requests to accept Saudi demands.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said Thursday the dispute with Qatar would not be on the agenda of the Arab summit.
This boycott decision comes amid a worsening dispute which began in June 2017, when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain cut diplomatic relations with Qatar and imposed a land, sea and air blockade, after accusing Doha of supporting "terrorism". Qatar continues to vehemently reject the allegations as "baseless".
On June 22, the block, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, issued a 13-point list of demands, including the shutdown of Al Jazeera TV, limiting ties with Iran, and expelling Turkish troops stationed in the country as a prerequisite to lifting the blockade.
Qatar rejected all the demands, denouncing them as attempts to violate its sovereignty.