Amid Qatar Crisis, China Tells Iran That Gulf Stability Is Best

Qatar Airways Says Flights Operating Normally Despite Diplomatic Crisis

It marks the biggest diplomatic crisis in the Persian Gulf since the 1991 invasion of Kuwait by Iraq. Only Kuwait hosts a stronger US military presence in the Middle East.

In an interview with BBC radio, UAE Ambassador to Russia Omar Saif Ghobash said Qatar had to choose between supporting extremism or supporting its neighbours.

Qatar is the site of the Al Udeid Air Base which is home to more than 11,000 US military personnel and has been used in launching airstrikes against ISIS targets.

He says that funding has to end.

Earlier this week, Trump appeared to tie the blockade to the success of his trip in May to Saudi Arabia and welcomed it as positive news in a series of tweets. Yes, we'll support these mediation efforts, along with the emir of Kuwait, Tillerson said. They have imposed what Qatar says is a blockade of shipping and air traffic and closed Qatar's only land border, causing panic buying at supermarkets and provoking confusion and anxiety across the population. Qatar's neighbors accuse it of destabilizing the region by supporting proxies of Shiite Muslim Iran and the Sunni militants of al-Qaeda and Islamic State, charges the sheikdom has denied.

It gave the example of a Saudi man, a resident of Doha with his Qatari wife and children, who had been unable to visit his sick mother hospitalised in Saudi Arabia because he would be blocked from returning to his family.

"It won't happen immediately", he said. Turkey also has chose to send troops to a base it maintains in Qatar in a sign of support.

Still, the Pentagon has been developing contingency plans in case there's any interruption, defense officials said. The state itself openly supports Hamas, and has always been one of the more "permissive" jurisdictions for private citizens to finance extremist groups throughout the region. India must not take sides in this dispute or try to weigh in in any manner: over seven million Indians live and work in the Gulf Cooperation Council member countries and any move may have repercussions on them too.

In an interview published by Saudi-owned Asharq al Awsat newspaper, Bahraini Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed al-Khalifa said conditions posed by the four countries for a resolution of the crisis were "crystal clear".

"We believe these are unintended consequences, especially during the holy month of Ramadan", Tillerson said, referring to the most important holiday on the Muslim calendar.

Tillerson said the decision of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt to cut diplomatic and economic relations with the neighboring, energy-rich emirate was having dire humanitarian consequences and hurting USA military operations fighting Islamic State militants.

In a Wednesday phone call with the Qatari Emir, Trump extended an olive branch, offering to help the parties resolve their differences with a White House meeting if necessary, and offered the services of Tillerson as a mediator. CNN is reporting that United States investigators believe Russian hackers may have been behind the effort, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation has been sent to Qatar to help probe.

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