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Arab Nations say Qatar's Rejection of Demands 'Not Serious'

Arab Nations say Qatar's Rejection of Demands 'Not Serious'”

The four countries cut ties to the Federation Internationale de Football Association 2022 World Cup host early last month, over its alleged support for extremist groups and ties with Shiite power Iran.

According to reports, the process of freezing Qatar's membership of the GCC could be initiated by a single member of the six-nation bloc, the GCC's statute says. "We find it did not provide a basis for Qatar to retreat from its policies", Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said, reading out a joint statement after the meeting.

The statement said that Doha lacked "understanding of the seriousness and gravity of the situation".

For his part, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir said: "Turkey told us it will remain neutral from the crisis, and we hope they will stick to that position".

"Qatar should change its policy from destruction to construction", he said.

The contents of Qatar's response submitted on Monday have not been disclosed, but earlier Qatar's Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said the list of demands "is unrealistic and is not actionable".

Qatar is already the world's largest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG).

While the isolation is taking its toll on Qatar - Moody's Investors Service cut its credit rating to negative and its stock market has dropped 10 percent since the boycott took effect on June 5 - the country has received support from Turkey and Iran, and has said it's ready and able to wait out the embargo for as long as it takes.

The news came a few days after Qatar handed its official response to the list of 13 demands to the emir of Kuwait, who has been mediating between Qatar and the four Arab states.

The ministers accused Qatar of refusing to abide by worldwide laws and continuing to support terrorism - a stance that prompted the boycott now in its second month.

Responding on demand to close Al Jazeera TV channel, the Qatari authorities suggested that the four Arab countries should act symmetrically and stop broadcasting of other Arab channels, such as Al Arabiya and Al Hadath, headquartered in the UAE.

The four states went on to call for an emergency meeting - to convene in Bahraini capital Manama - to discuss the ongoing inter-Arab political crisis.

According to Arab News, they are expected to meet next in Bahrain.

Qatar has refused to comply with the 13 demands made by the Saudi-led quartet, so now the ball is in their court.

Qatar expects harsh measures by the Arab nations if they are not satisfied by its response to a list of demands made almost two weeks ago.

Qatar appealed for "dialogue" to resolve the row while US President Donald Trump spoke to Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to urge all parties "to negotiate constructively". "Now we can start looking into the (terror) allegations", said Gabriel.

The foreign affairs think tank called for a public inquiry into the role of Saudi Arabia and other Gulf nations.

But the Gulf state may be reluctant to carry out conditions such as the closure of the al-Jazeera television station and removal of a Turkish military base - matters it considers impinge on Qatari sovereignty, Reuters noted.



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