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Middle East

Saudi FM says Qatar should 'revise' policies

Prince Saud al-Faisal says Doha should modify its polices after countries' spat, Saudi-owned Al-Hayat newspaper reports.

Last updated: 18 Mar 2014 20:52
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The Saudi foreign minister said that there will be 'no American mediation to put an end to the crisis' [File: EPA]

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal has warned there will only be rapprochement between Riyadh and Doha when Qatar "modifies" policies at the centre of their row, the Saudi-owned Al-Hayat  newspaper has reported.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) earlier this month recalled their ambassadors from Qatar after accusing the fellow Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) state of interfering in their internal affairs and of supporting the Muslim Brotherhood.

"If the policy of the country that has caused the crisis [Qatar] has been revised, there will be a breakthrough," Saud al-Faisal said, was quoted by Al-Hayat.

Last week, Qatar dismissed demands by the three fellow Gulf states for changes to its foreign policy, calling its independence "non-negotiable".

The US-aligned GCC, formed in 1981 and which also includes Kuwait and Oman, has generally presented a united front at times of threat ranging from the Iranian revolution on the other side of the Gulf to Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.

The minister added, in response to a question from the newspaper, that there will be "no American mediation to put an end to the crisis".

President Barack Obama is expected to visit Riyadh at the end of March.

Saudi Arabia at a March 5 meeting of the GCC demanded that Doha shut down Al Jazeera, a source told the AFP news agency.

Riyadh at the meeting also called for the closure of two think-tanks based in Qatar, the Brookings Doha Centre and the Arab Centre for Research and Policy Studies.

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