Al-Dammam, Abu Dhabi – The Gulf’s crisis with Qatar took a new turn after a list of Gulf and Arab demands delivered to the emirate was leaked to the media.
The list, compiled by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt, was handed to Doha by Kuwait, which is playing a mediator role in the crisis.
The four countries later accused Qatar of “leaking” the list to the media, which will lead to further escalation.
In the most caustic response to the leak, the UAE warned that the development is tantamount to an announcement of the failure of the mediation efforts.
UAE Foreign Minister Anwar Gargash declared: “The leak is aimed at leading to the failure of the mediation in an immature step that we have grown accustomed to from our brother.”
“It was better off adopting a more mature approach and dealing with the demands of its neighbors seriously,” he added.
“We can no longer accept the role of the ‘Trojan Horse’ from our brother against its Gulf environment,” he stated.
It can no longer continue to fund extremism and act as political and media platform for it, the minister announced, stressing: “There are conditions to its return to the Gulf fold.”
The 13-point list includes a demand on the closure of the al-Jazeera television station that is owned by Qatar. It also demanded that Doha limit its ties with Iran.
The demands, which were not officially declared, also call for the closure of the Turkish military base in Qatar, prompting an immediate refusal by Defense Minister Fikri Isik.
“Reassessing the military base agreement with Qatar is not open to debate,” he commented.
“The base is aimed at training Qatari soldiers and preserving Qatar and the region’s security. No one should be upset with this… Any demand for us to stop this collaboration will be interpreted as meddling in bilateral ties,” he explained.
Qatar was urged to cut its ties with terrorist organizations, including the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, al-Nusra Front, Fatah al-Sham and Lebanon’s “Hezbollah”. Doha must cease its backing of the terrorists and turn over internationally and regionally wanted suspects.
The emirate has ten days to comply with these demands before they are rendered null and void.
Doha was called on to hand over all terrorist fugitives it is harboring, stop the financing of terrorism and refrain from destabilizing the region. It must stop all media networks and end its meddling in the internal affairs of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt.
Furthermore, the list of demands calls on Doha to stop naturalizing the citizens of these four countries. Qatar must pay compensations to these countries for any damage they incurred over the years due to Doha’s policies.
The implementation of these demands should be monitored and monthly reports will be issued on the matter during the first year of their adoption and every three months in the next.
Sources in Cairo questioned the content of the leak, saying that it is inaccurate, because the reasons for the boycott of Qatar are much greater than what was cited.
“Doha does not abide by Arab consensus. It took part in the Islamic-Arab-US summit in Riyadh and yet it later ignored the Riyadh declaration. It refuses everything that will take it back to the Arab fold. It is also seeking to hinder the work of the Gulf Cooperation Council through undiplomatic practices.”
“The Kuwait mediation is just an attempt that will reveal in the coming days the extent to which Qatar has been receptive to it,” added the sources, who chose to remain anonymous.
Qatari officials have not commented on the demands of the four countries, but its Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani had on Monday announced that it will only carry out negotiations with them if they cease their measures against Doha.