Tillerson urges nations to negotiate to resolve Qatar crisis

Conflict around Qatar should be settled by diplomatic means - source at Foreign Ministry

The comments on Tuesday by Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, Qatar's foreign minister, came after a meeting with his U.S. counterpart, Rex Tillerson, in Washington, DC.

On Friday, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt handed a 13-point ultimatum to Qatar. "Iran's air space, ground and sea will always be open to Qatar as a ... friendly nation", said Rouhani, adding the cooperation between the two countries will remain "continuous".

U.S. Secretary of State Tillerson meets in Washington Tuesday with Qatari's foreign minister, three weeks after Saudi Arabia and other Arab states imposed trade and diplomatic embargoes on the oil-rich American ally.

Fox News reported last week that among the demands are that Qatar would shut down the media outlet Al-Jazeera, cut ties with the Muslim Brotherhood, and remove its military base in Turkey.

When asked what will happen if the demands are not fulfilled, al-Jubeir said, "We stay where we are".

They accused Qatar of aiding terrorist groups and Iran - charges it denied.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain announced on 5th June suspended all ties with Qatar, and have also closed their airspace to Qatari carriers and blocked the emirate's only land border.

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker sent a letter to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Monday saying he will block foreign military sales to members of the Gulf Cooperation Council until they can resolve their dispute with Qatar.

The US, which urges a diplomatic solution to the crisis, has been pushing for a list of grievances that are "reasonable and actionable".

Tillerson said Sunday that a number of the demands on Qatar would be "very hard to meet", and urged the U.S. allies to resolve their dispute.

The administration would be unlikely to ignore his resistance to the arms sales, and USA officials said they considered his statement part of a broader effort to solve the Qatar crisis.

The four countries have reportedly given Doha a 10-day deadline to meet their demands. "We don't have to deal with them", the Hill quoted al-Jubeir, as telling reporters at the Saudi Arabia Embassy in Washington D.C. on Tuesday. President Donald Trump has said the Saudi-led alliance was right to act against Qatar.

Qatar is a key USA ally in the fight against the Islamic State group and the US military base in the country is one of the largest in the Middle East.

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