Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Saudi permanently closes only land border with Qatar

Saudi Arabia has permanently closed its only land border with Qatar, which continues to be blockaded by the kingdom and some of its other Gulf neighbours.

According to a letter issued by Saudi Arabia’s customs directorate on Tuesday, the Salwa border gate had been shut-off permanently since Monday night.

The letter said Saudi officials ordered the closure.

The move comes as an ongoing diplomatic crisis nears eight months.

The gate was first closed two weeks after Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt, and Bahrain cut diplomatic and trade ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of financing “terrorism” and maintaining too close a relationship with their arch-rival, Iran. Doha denies the allegations.

The border was then reopened for a period of two weeks in August for pilgrims who wished to perform the annual Hajj pilgrimage to pass through.

At the time, Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani welcomed the move, but said it was a “politically-motivated decision”.

Although officially well received by Qatar, the move had sparked outrage from Qatari citizens on social media, who demanded the siege be lifted entirely.

The Arab quartet blocked direct air and land transport to and from Qatar and closed their airspace to all Qatar Airways flights after severing ties with Qatar.

Earlier this month, the annual regional summit of the six GCC countries was cut short , failing to resolve the ongoing crisis.

As part of the blockade, the Saudi-led group also asked all Qatari nationals to leave their countries, but Doha did not impose similar restrictions on the four Arab nations.

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.

Al Jazeera
Official Al Jazeera Mubahser News account آخر وأهم الأخبار تتابعونها عبر هذا الحساب.. كما يمكنكم متابعة حساب الجزيرة مباشر @ajmubasher Al Jazeera has over 663268 followers on Twitter.

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

Mbeki tells ANC that land without compensation goes against the...

‘This would be a very serious disincentive to investment,’ says Thabo Mbeki in a document arguing that the ANC should not proceed with the Constitutional amendment of section 25

Micro-hydropower lights up an Eastern Cape village

There is hidden potential for small hydropower plants in South Africa

More top stories

Pandemic accelerates decline of printed news, but trust in media...

Covid-19 has forced newsrooms to find new business models, but the public has turned to the news more in the last year

Gigaba says it was ‘an unfortunate coincidence’ SOEs were captured...

The former public enterprises minister says he was deliberately removed from state companies' dealings and could not have learned of the looting

SIU freezes R22-million in Digital Vibes accounts

The Special Investigating Unit said it would ask the tribunal to declare the health department’s contract with the company unlawful

Life-saving free train travel offered to domestic abuse victims in...

A pioneering railway scheme in the UK is helping domestic violence victims to escape their abusers by providing them with free travel to reach refuge
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…
×