UAE closes airspace to all Qatar flights as GCC crisis escalates

Qatar Airways Says Flights Operating Normally Despite Diplomatic Crisis

Qatar Airways Says Flights Operating Normally Despite Diplomatic Crisis

Several Arab countries including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt cut off diplomatic relations with Qatar, accusing the latter of supporting ISIS, Al-Qaeda and other terrorists and destabilizing the situation in the Middle East.

"This is about change of policy, change of approach", said UAE foreign minister Anwar Gargash.

Qatar vowed on Thursday to ride out the isolation and said it would not compromise its sovereignty over foreign policy to resolve the region's biggest diplomatic crisis in years.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates this week broke off relations with Qatar, which has dismissed the accusations as "unjustified" and "baseless".

The Gulf crisis is showing no signs of abating as it continues to escalate despite efforts by USA and Kuwait to calm rising tensions among GCC member states.

Kuwait's Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah was met planeside by Qatar's emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, when he arrived on Wednesday night.

Qatar sympathisers in the UAE will be facing a jail term up to 15 years and be slapped with a fine of not less than half a million dirhams, a top official warned today.

The announcement follows a major diplomatic rift between Qatar, the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, all members of the powerful Gulf Cooperation Council over allegations that the small, but wealthy peninsula state supports terrorism.

Presidential poll on July 17
The Election Commission will conduct the vote through ballot papers and declare the result on July 20. At the moment, there are 13 vacancies in the electoral college, which includes three MPs and 10 MLAs.

Asked for specifics about what Arab nations wanted from Qatar, Gargash said expelling members of Hamas and other groups from Qatar was important.

"Doha now is completely isolated", Al Qassemi said.

It said hackers installed a file and then published a fake news item attributed to Qatar's emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, just after midnight May 24.

"We are in talks with Turkey and Iran and other countries", said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the subject, adding that the supplies would be brought in through Qatar Airways cargo flights.

While liberal compared to much of the Middle East, the UAE has tough cybercrime and slander laws under which people can be arrested, imprisoned and deported for taking photographs without the consent of those shown.

The crisis began in part over what the Qataris described as a false news report planted during a hack of its state-run news agency. Russia denied Wednesday that it hacked the agency after a CNN report quoted anonymous USA officials saying they suspected Russian hackers.

Gargash said measures taken against Qatar this week were not aimed at seeking new leadership in Doha.

Recommended News

  • Trump to nominate ex-Justice Department official to lead FBI

    The defense has pointed out that phone records show Constand called Cosby 53 times after she says he assaulted her. In an early morning two-sentence tweet, Trump said he meant to nominate Wray, a high-ranking official in George W.
    Offensive to drive ISIS from Raqqa 'capital' in Syria begins

    Offensive to drive ISIS from Raqqa 'capital' in Syria begins

    It follows months of advances to the north, east and west of Raqqa by the SDF, which includes Arabs and PYD terrorists. Two of the government's three routes to Deir el-Zour intersect with rebel and Kurdish forces supported by the U.S.
    Army convoy attacked by militants in J-K

    Army convoy attacked by militants in J-K

    Officials said that militants, hiding in bushes and behind trees, fired at the convoy and fled the spot. Six soldiers were injured in the attack and one of them later succumbed to his injuries at a hospital.
  • Turkey says Qatar deployment aims to ensure security

    UAE ambassador to the US Yousef al-Otaiba praised Mr Trump's leadership in the face of Qatar's "troubling support for extremism". But the states did not respond to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's warning of humanitarian consequences.

    Body of Frenchman recovered from Thames, UK attack death toll 8

    Spanish banker Ignacio Echeverria (39), was killed after trying to defend a woman with his skateboard in the Borough Market area. Le Parisien daily newspaper named the second Frenchman to die in the attack as 36-year-old Sebastian Belanger.

    Top US diplomat in China quits over Trump climate policy, sources say

    The state department said the embassy's economics councillor Jonathan Fritz would be filling in behind Mr Rank immediately. He joined the State Department in 1990 and speaks Mandarin, French, Dari and Greek, according to his official biography.
  • Defiant May vows to lead Britain to Brexit after United Kingdom election blow

    After three recounts, Labour took the wealthy London constituency of Kensington from the Conservatives by just 20 votes. The Northern Ireland party would will provide the necessary support and votes in the House of Commons.
    Who will win the British general election?

    Who will win the British general election?

    If the poll is accurate and the swing were uniform across the country, the Tories would be 17 seats short of an overall majority. YouGov's election model was based on voting intention figures which gave May a lead of just 3 percentage points, YouGov said.

    'Pirates of the Caribbean' tops box office, 'Baywatch' sinks

    It even raked in less money than the weeks-old Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 which added $25.1 million to its treasure chest. It has now surpassed the domestic, foreign, and worldwide totals of the original, which topped out at $773.3 million in 2014.
  • Twitter users, blocked by President Trump, cry censorship

    In the poll, 69 percent of registered voters said Trump tweets too much, up 13 points from a similar survey in December . The administration could plausibly argue that the President's social media usage is performed as a private person.

    Trump sons defend his criticism of London mayor

    No reason to be alarmed. "It's even more important that we work together with our allies and our friends and our partners". May's government, however, on Tuesday dismissed Khan's call for the visit to be canceled.

    Andrew Weaver welcomes Clark's 'willingness to work across party lines'

    The provincial Liberals are not related to the federal Liberal Party, which is led by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. It won't help the hundreds of thousands of kids like mine who were part of the generation who went through school under B.C.

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.