Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Saudi Arabia demands Qatar close Al Jazeera, sever ties with Iran

The Gulf crisis escalated late Thursday, as Kuwait, acting as a mediator, presented Qatar with a 13-point list of demands from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, and Egypt.

A copy of the document – obtained and translated by the Associated Press – instructs officials in Doha to sever diplomatic ties with Iran, shut down state broadcaster Al Jazeera, and close a Turkish military base in the country.

The Saudi-led bloc moved to isolate Qatar earlier this month, imposing an air and naval blockade on June 5 in retaliation for the state’s alleged cooperation with extremist groups including the Muslim Brotherhood, Hezbollah, Daesh, al-Qaeda, and their splinter factions. 

The Qataris have vehemently denied the allegations; however, they once admitted to providing certain organizations – namely Palestine’s Sunni-Islamic fundamentalist group Hamas – refuge for the sake of promoting dialogue and soothing tensions.

Doha has not yet issued a formal response to the demands, but government representatives have previously stated negotiations cannot begin until the Arab coalition lifts its sanction regime. Moreover, the mere notion of shuttering al-Jazeera – and its multiple affiliates – was deemed out of the question.

With regard to Iran, Qatar is being told to deport any and all members of the country’s Revolutionary Guard and limit commercial interactions to those that comply with U.S. mandates.

In addition, the country must locate and extradite all individuals currently facing terrorism charges in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the other signatory states.

Perhaps the strictest directives, however, call Qatar to pledge military, political, and economic allegiance to the Gulf Cooperation Council ( مجلس التعاون الخليجي), a regional partnership that has worked aggressively to combat Iranian influence throughout the Arab world, and pay unspecified compensation for prior destabilizing, bad acts.

The document allegedly ends with a warning that the “requirements must be met within 10 days from the date of delivery or they will considered void.”  

Subscribe to the M&G

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them.

Peter Rothpletz
Peter Rothpletz is an American writer and contributor to the Mail & Guardian. An alumnus of Yale University's Journalism Initiative, he primarily reports on international affairs, civil conflict, and radical extremism.

Related stories

WELCOME TO YOUR M&G

If you’re reading this, you clearly have great taste

If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to the Mail & Guardian for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a week, and get more great reads.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

Advertising

Subscribers only

R350 relief grant will be paid into bank accounts or...

There are concerns that post office branch closures will make it difficult for beneficiaries to access the grant

South Africa at risk of spillover from international inflation, economists...

Higher international oil prices, for example, could affect local transport costs through second-round effects

More top stories

Cape Town transport stabilised after two weeks of taxi violence

But despite the calm, rival taxi associations have not yet made peace in their turf war

R350 relief grant will be paid into bank accounts or...

There are concerns that post office branch closures will make it difficult for beneficiaries to access the grant

China launches carbon market as it aims to reduce emissions

China’s emissions exceed those of developed countries, in large part because of its population of more than 1.4-billion people

Military not a magic bullet: South Africa needs to do...

More than ever before, decisive leadership is needed from politicians, military leadership and civil society to march the South African National Defence Force in the right direction
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…
×