Erdogan says Turkey offered to set up base in Saudi Arabia

Illustration by Tanmoy Chakraborty

Ali Bin Samikh Al-Marri says the isolation of the Persian Gulf emirate is worse than injustices that were imposed by the Berlin Wall. Saudi Arabia's decision to sever relations with Qatar earlier this month was partially brought on by Qatar's unwillingness to cut ties with Iran, Saudi Arabia's primary regional rival.

Defense Secretary James Mattis greets an airman as he boards a U.S. Air Force C-17 for a day trip to a U.S. military base in Djibouti from Doha, Qatar April 23, 2017.

Turkey's foreign minister visited Saudi Arabia on Friday for talks aimed at resolving the Gulf diplomatic crisis, as Qatar accused its neighbours of imposing a devastating "siege" on the emirate. "This is a political issue in the region".

The statement marked the first confirmation from the US that Tillerson, who has met with top officials from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in recent days, is formally trying to mediate a solution to the Qatar conflict. Meanwhile, U.S. military spokespeople have highlighted the importance of not disrupting critical operations conducted from Al-Udeid, and have gone out of their way to demonstrate continuity in our security partnership. Leaders pointed to Qatar - look! Qatar's ties with Iran, with whom it shares a major offshore natural gas field, is another criticism of the Arab countries. "Perhaps this will be the beginning of the end to the horror of terrorism!"

However, it was not Trump's administration that made this deal, but rather Barack Obama's in November 2016 accompanied by notifications to Congress. Regime change in Doha is also being threatened through disgruntled royal family members. It wasn't immediately clear if the two deals were one in the same. These are two aims that, if not attained, add two more cards in the hands of the impeachment team facing the president with several complementary investigations underway.

The missions also reaffirmed their willingness to continue working with the concerned parties to maintain security, to combat terrorism and to safeguard the stability and well-being of the people of the region, including the Qatari people, in full respect for their human rights' and global humanitarian law's commitments, the statement added.


But last week, US President Donald Trump expressed support for the Saudi-led allegations, charging that Qatar had "historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high level".

Mevlut Cavusoglu announced the visit after speaking with the foreign ministers of Kuwait, Qatar and Tunisia. In that case, we could be entering a new chapter of proxy wars again, where the West would have to choose between fighting terrorism or going to war with Iran.

You would be forgiven for thinking the USA backs Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in their current standoff against Qatar. Qatar bears the full financial cost of this American presence on its land.

Saudi Arabia's foreign minister said on Friday that a list of grievances involving Qatar was being drawn up and would be made public soon.

Qataris had scheduled Wednesday's trip to formalize portions of this arms deal with the USA government about two months ago, according to Qatari and State Department officials.

Haifa Said is chief editor of Syria Arab News Agency.

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