Severing ties with Qatar: reasons and procedures

Within just 30 minutes, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom of Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates had all severed their diplomatic and consular relations with the state of Qatar at dawn on Monday, in order to safeguard their security from the dangers of terrorism, according to official statements.

The story began when the Bahrain News Agency (BNA) posted a statement on its website announcing that the Kingdom of Bahrain had cut its diplomatic relations with Qatar, citing its reasons and procedures, followed by Saudi Arabia, then the UAE and Egypt.

Al-Masry Al-Youm examines the reasons and procedures adopted by Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain according to their statements issued against the ruling regime in Qatar.

Bahrain’s Reasons:

– Qatar’s insistence on further undermining security and stability in the Kingdom of Bahrain and interfering in its affairs.

– The escalation and incitement of Qatar’s media and its support of acts of terror and financing armed groups associated with Iran to carry out subversive attacks and spread chaos in the Kingdom in flagrant violation of all agreements, covenants and principles of international law without any regard to values, law, morals or consideration of the principles of good neighborliness or the premises of Gulf relations, and the denial of previous commitments.

– The dangerous Qatari practices have not been confined to Bahrain, but have also been extended to sister countries that have been informed that such acts reflect a very dangerous pattern which cannot be ignored or accepted and must be addressed with full strength and firmness.

Bahrain procedures:

– Severing its diplomatic relations with the state of Qatar in order to preserve its national security.

– Bahrain is also withdrawing its diplomatic mission from Doha and giving all members of the Qatari diplomatic mission 48 hours to leave the Kingdom and the completion of the necessary procedures.

– Bahrain is also closing its airspace, ports and territorial waters to air traffic and shipping to and from Qatar within 24 hours of the announcement.

– The government is banning its citizens from traveling to Qatar or staying there.

– Qatari citizens are not allowed to enter or transit through Bahrain.

– Qatari residents and visitors are therefore given 14 days to leave the Kingdom in order to avoid any hostile attempts or activities that may exploit the situation, “despite our pride and confidence in our brethren among the Qatari people and their love for their second country”.

Bahrain’s message to the Qatari People:

While the Kingdom of Bahrain regrets this decision taken to protect its security and maintain its stability, it acknowledges that the brotherly people of Qatar are aware of its suffering as, with each act of terror, they witness the casualties among their brothers and sisters in Bahrain because their government continues to support terrorism at all levels and is attempting to bring down the legitimate regime in Bahrain.

Saudi Arabia’s reasons:

– The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has taken this decisive decision as a result of grave violations being committed by the authorities in Doha over the past few years, in secret and in public, aiming to divide internal Saudi ranks, instigate against the state and infringe on its sovereignty.

– Qatar has adopted various terrorist and sectarian groups aimed at destabilizing the region –including the Muslim Brotherhood Group, the Islamic State and al-Qaeda — and promoted the ethics and plans of these groups through its media, supported the activities of Iranian-backed terrorist groups in the Qatif governorate in Saudi Arabia and in Bahrain.

– Financing, adopting and sheltering extremists who seek to undermine the stability and unity of the homeland at home and abroad, and using the media which seeks to fuel the strife internally. It was clear to Saudi Arabia that the authorities in Doha supported and backed the coup by al-Houthi militias  in Yemen, even after the announcement of the Coalition to Support the Legitimacy in Yemen.

– The Kingdom has also taken this decision in solidarity with Bahrain which is subjected to terrorist campaigns and operations supported by the authorities in Doha.

– Qatar has repeatedly violated its international obligations and the agreements signed under the umbrella of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) for Arab states to cease the hostilities against the Kingdom and stand against terrorist groups and activities, of which the latest one was its failure to implement the Riyadh Agreement.

Saudi Arabia procedures:

– The government will exercise its sovereign rights, guaranteed by the international law and protecting its national security from the dangers of terrorism and extremism, and has decided to sever diplomatic and consular relations with Qatar.

– Close all land, sea and air ports, prevent crossing into Saudi territories, airspace and territorial waters. The Kingdom will start immediate legal procedures with fraternal and friendly countries and international companies to implement the same procedures for all means of transport to and from Qatar for reasons relating to Saudi national security.

– In accordance with the decision to cut off diplomatic and consular relations, Saudi citizens are prohibited from traveling to Qatar, residing in or passing through it; while residents and visitors must leave its territories within 14 days.

– The decision, for security reasons, unfortunately prevents Qatari citizens’ entry to or transit through the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; those Qatari residents and visitors have to leave Saudi territories within 14 days, confirming the Kingdom’s commitment and keenness to provide all facilities and services for Qatari pilgrims and Umrah performers.

Saudi Arabia’s message to the Qataris:

– The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia affirms that it has long been patient despite the authorities in Doha continuing to evade their commitments and conspire against it in the interest of the Qatari people, which is a natural and genuine extension of their brethren in the Kingdom and an integral part of their pillars. The Kingdom will continue to support the people of Qatar, its security and stability regardless of the hostile practices being carried out by the authorities in Doha.

The United Arab Emirates’ reasons:

– The UAE affirms its complete commitment and support to the Gulf Cooperation Council and to the security and stability of the GCC states.

– Due to the insistence of the state of Qatar to continue to undermine the security and stability of the region and its failure to honor international commitments and agreements, it has been decided to take the necessary measures for safeguarding the interests of the GCC states in general and those of the brotherly Qatari people in particular.

– The Qatari authorities’ failure to abide by the Riyadh Agreement on returning GCC diplomats to Doha and its Complementary Arrangement in 2014, as well as Qatar’s continued support, funding and hosting of terror groups, primarily the Muslim Brotherhood, and its sustained endeavors to promote the ideologies of IS and al-Qaeda across its direct and indirect media.

– Qatar’s violation of the statement issued at the US-Islamic Summit in Riyadh on May 21, 2017 on countering terrorism in the region and considering Iran a state sponsor of terrorism.

– Qatari authorities’ hosting of terrorist elements and meddling in the affairs of other countries as well as their support of terror groups – policies which are likely to push the region into a stage of unpredictable consequences.

United Arab Emirates procedures:

– The United Arab Emirates severed all relations with the state of Qatar, including breaking off diplomatic relations, and will give Qatari diplomats 48 hours to leave the UAE.

– Preventing Qatari nationals from entering the UAE or crossing its points of entry, giving Qatari residents and visitors in the UAE 14 days to leave the country for precautionary security reasons. UAE nationals are likewise banned from traveling to or staying in Qatar or transiting through its territories.

– Closure of UAE airspace and seaports for all Qataris in 24 hours and banning all Qatari means of transportation, coming to or leaving the UAE, from crossing, entering or leaving the UAE territories, and taking all legal measures in collaboration with friendly countries and international companies with regards to Qataris using the UAE airspace and territorial waters, from and to Qatar, for national security considerations.

UAE’s message to the Qataris:

– While regretting the policies taken by the state of Qatar that sow seeds of sedition and discord among the region’s countries, the UAE affirms its full respect and appreciation for the brotherly Qatari people on account of the profound historical, religious and fraternal ties and kin relations binding UAE and Qatari peoples.

Egypt’s reasons:

– The determination of the Qatari government to take an anti-Egyptian course.

– The failure of all attempts to dissuade the Qatari government from supporting terrorist organizations, especially the Muslim Brotherhood, and harboring its leaders who were sentenced in terrorist operations targeting the security and safety of Egypt, as well as promoting al-Qaeda and IS ideologies and supporting terrorist operations in the Sinai.

– Qatar’s insistence on interfering in the internal affairs of Egypt and the countries of the region in a way that threatens Arab states’ security and strengthens the seeds of strife and division within the Arab societies according to a deliberate plan that aims to undermine the unity of the Arab nation and its interests.

Egypt procedures:

– Cut diplomatic relations with the state of Qatar.

– Closure of its airspace, sea ports and all other means of Qatari transport in the interest of Egyptian national security.

– Take the necessary measures to address friendly and sisterly countries, Arab and international companies to work in the same manner regarding their means of transport destined for Doha.


Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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