DOHA, Qatar — The Latest on the crisis between four major Arab nations and the tiny Persian Gulf country of Qatar (all times local):
A senior Turkish government official says the whole Gulf region could suffer if the crisis between Qatar and its Arab nations deepens.
Speaking to reporters Monday, Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus also described the feud as an “artificially-created crisis” and said the 13 demands its neighbors had imposed on Qatar were too stiff for any country to accept.
The list of demands includes an end to Turkey’s military presence in Qatar.
“If this crisis is allowed to deepen, then not just one country but all of the countries of the region would pay the price,” Kurtulmus said.
Kurtulmus reitereated that Turkey had no intention to shut down its military base in Doha.
“Turkey’s base in Qatar is not just about Qatar’s security it is about the security of the region,” Kurtulmus said.
Turkey has sided with Qatar in the dispute, sending it food and other supplies and quickly ratifying legislation allowing the deployment of troops to the Turkish base.
Britain’s top diplomat has welcomed a decision by four Arab countries to give Qatar more time to meet their demands.
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson in a statement Monday also welcomed Qatar’s decision to provide a response to mediator Kuwait on its position.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain cut ties to Qatar early last month. They delivered a 13-point list of demands to end the standoff on June 22 and early Monday extended a deadline by 48 hours at Kuwait’s request for it to comply.
Johnson called the deadline extension and Qatar’s response “an important step in building confidence between the parties.”
Qatar’s foreign minister, carrying a handwritten letter from the country’s ruling emir, has arrived in Kuwait amid a diplomatic crisis engulfing his nation.
That’s according to the state-run Kuwait News Agency, which reported Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani’s arrival on Monday in Kuwait City.
KUNA says the letter would be given to Kuwait’s ruler, Sheikh Sabah Al Sabah, who is mediating the crisis between Qatar and four Arab nations — Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt.
The Arab nations earlier on Monday extended a deadline for Qatar to meet their demands to end the dispute by 48 hours.
Egypt says it will host a meeting of Arab nations that have cut off ties to Qatar.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid says foreign ministers of Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates will meet in Cairo on Wednesday.
He says the meeting will discuss the future steps in dealing with Qatar, as well as exchange of points of view and evaluating existing international and regional contacts.
Cairo also will play host to a meeting of a United Nations agency monitoring international air travel over a complaint by Qatar about its neighbors cutting off its air routes over the dispute. That meeting is due on Thursday.
The Arab nations have given Qatar a 48-hour extension to meet its demands to end the crisis. Qatar has rejected the demands, saying they violate the nation’s sovereignty.
A group of Arab nations have extended a deadline for Qatar to respond to their list of demands in a diplomatic crisis roiling the Gulf, saying Kuwait’s emir requested the delay as part of his efforts to mediate the dispute.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain cut off ties with 2022 FIFA World Cup host Qatar on June 5, restricting access to their airspace and ports and sealing Qatar’s only land border, which it shares with Saudi Arabia.
They issued a 13-point list of demands to end the standoff June 22 and gave the natural gas-rich country 10 days to comply.
The joint statement early Monday by the four Arab nations says d they expected Qatar to respond to their demands later in the day. The new deadline would expire late Tuesday or early Wednesday.
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