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Belgium Ready to Promote Dialogue Among Persian Gulf States Amid Qatar Crisis

© AFP 2023 / ALEXANDER NEMENOV Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders
Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders - Sputnik International
Brussels is ready to help organize dialogue between the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) as regional ties have suffered a major setback after several members of the council broke off relations with Qatar, Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders said Friday at a meeting with his Qatari counterpart.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, the foreign ministers of Qatar and Belgium met in Brussels to discuss the fight against terrorism and the regional diplomatic row. Since June, Doha has been embroiled in a diplomatic rift with GCC members such as Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

"We are very open to help… organise a possible dialogue in the region. It is first of all the task of the GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] but if it is possible to help…, we are very open to do that," Reynders said at a press conference, as quoted by the Al Jazeera broadcaster.

A view of Damascus. (File) - Sputnik International
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At the same time, Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani criticized the states which broke off relations with Doha for not giving a response to the mediators of the crisis, such as the United States and Kuwait.

"The Kuwaiti mediation, they are trying their best in order to bring the blockading nations together with Qatar and there were no responses, which is the same continuous systematic behavior coming out of those blockading nations since the crisis started 90 days ago … There is nothing being provided, neither to Washington nor to Kuwait until now to show any legitimate grievances for all the measures they have taken," the minister said.

Al-Thani accused the Gulf states of continuing to escalate the crisis.

"But we have seen on the contrary that they are just continuing their escalation by some political provocations from time to time and the continuation of spreading lies and disinformation campaign about Qatar," the official underlined.

On Thursday, Al Thani said that the GCC needs a new set of principles so that the security and sovereignty of member states could be guaranteed.

Several GCC member states, as well as Egypt and a number of other states, broke off diplomatic ties with Doha over Qatar's alleged support of terrorism and interference in other states' internal affairs. On June 22, the countries blocking Qatar conveyed to Doha via mediators from Kuwait a list of 13 demands to restore relations. The list included, in particular, the closing of the Al Jazeera broadcasting network and the scaling down of Qatar's ties with Iran. Doha has rejected the demands as an infringement on Qatar’s sovereignty.

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