Tabnak – Short after Saudi Arabia and its GCC allies extended the deadline for Qatar to respond to their demands aimed at ending the diplomatic spat, it was announced that Doha has handed over its official response to the Kuwaiti government. Some suggestions has been raised so far about the content of Qatar’s response.
International news outlets reported Monday evening that Qatar has officially handed over its response to a list of demands requested by the siege countries, Saudi Arabia and its allies, after they agreed to extend the initial 10-day deadline for another two days to address their grievances.
According to Al Jazeera, Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammad bin Abdulrahman Al Thani delivered Doha's official response to Emir of Kuwait Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, who has been meditating the dispute, during a short visit to Kuwait on Monday.
No details of the response have been disclosed yet but Sheikh Mohammad had earlier asserted that the so-called list of demands was "made to be rejected."
However, citing "informed sources,” Arab newspaper Rai al-Youm reports that Qatar has delivered a very soft response to the demands raised by the Saudi-led block, trying to prevent any escalation of the ongoing crisis.
The paper claims that Doha’s "flexibility” involves its consent to expelling Hamas members out of Qatar, controlling the activities of hardline cleric Sheikh Yousef Qarzawi and maybe making him relocate to Istanbul, ordering Al Jazeera to stop its anti-Egypt propaganda and to pay compensation to Cairo and also cutting all financial ties with the Muslim Brotherhood and expelling some of its current leaders.
As cutting ties with Iran was another part of the Arab nations’ demands from Doha, Rai al-Youm suggests that Qatar has declared its readiness to decrease the level of its relations with Iran, but believes that such an act should be done by the decision and agreement of all GCC member-states.
It should be noted that Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt had announced in the early hours of Monday they were pushing back a deadline for Qatar to agree to a list of 13 demands they issued on June 22. A joint statement said they were extending the ultimatum, which had been due to expire at the end of the day on Sunday, at the request of Kuwait's emir.
The demands include shutting down the Doha-based Al Jazeera broadcaster, a media network that has reportedly been critical especially of Saudi Arabia, scaling back cooperation with Iran, closing the Turkish military base in Qatar, and paying an unspecified sum in reparations. Qatar later said the demands were "unrealistic, unreasonable and unacceptable."
On Saturday, Saudi Arabia reiterated that its demands on Doha were "non-negotiable." Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir tweeted that Riyadh’s "demands on Qatar to stop funding terrorism are non-negotiable."