As Tillerson calls for calm, Trump calls out Qatar on terror

Qatar says Kuwait trying to solve diplomatic rift

Saudi Arabia and Bahrain issued statements welcoming U.S. President Donald Trump's demand the previous day for Qatar to stop supporting terrorism, while ignoring a U.S. State Department call for them to ease pressure.

"So we had a decision to make: Do we take the easy road or do we finally take a hard but necessary action?" "They have been definitely playing footsie with a lot of terrorist organizations, but we have a big air base there".

He added that the emir of Qatar has made progress in halting financial support and expelling terrorist elements from his country, but he must do more, and he must do it more quickly.

Previously, the US had insisted the Qatar crisis wouldn't affect USA military efforts in the Middle East.

Davis said the diplomatic rift has not interrupted or curtailed operations at al-Udeid air base, a launching pad for US military efforts in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan. "We are in favour of resolving any disagreements through. dialogue", Lavrov said. He also encouraged the other countries involved to mend the rift, citing reported humanitarian hardship in Qatar. He says the USA asks that there be "no further escalation". He called on Qatar "to be responsive to the concerns of its neighbors".

Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates have cut ties with Qatar, accusing their former Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) ally of supporting extremist groups. "No more funding", Trump said.

In its latest Country Reports on Terrorism, the US State Department said Qatar in 2015 froze assets and imposed travel bans on Ka'bi and Kawari, both of whom are Qatari citizens.

"We call on the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt to ease the blockade against Qatar", he said in Washington.

Trump said he'd told the kings, presidents and prime ministers that funding "Radical Ideology" can't be tolerated, and "Leaders pointed to Qatar - look!"


Still, the Pentagon has been developing contingency plans in case there's any interruption, defense officials said. They warned, however, that their ability to make longer-term plans was being affected. Home to some 10,000 troops, it is central to the US-led fight against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

He said the diplomatic rift has not interrupted or curtailed operations at al Udeid air base, a launching pad for USA military efforts in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan. "Others must also continue to eliminate factions of support for violent organisations within their own borders". "We know you're stronger together". He said families were being separated, children removed from school and Qataris forced to deal with food shortages.

"We believe these are unintended consequences, especially during the holy month of Ramadan", Tillerson said, referring to the most important holiday on the Muslim calendar.

The nations also said they planned to cut air and sea traffic.

A separate SPA report on Saturday acknowledged Tillerson's call for Qatar to curtail support for terrorism, but did not mention his remarks that the crisis was hurting ordinary Qataris, impairing business dealings and harming the US fight against the Islamic State militant group. CNN is reporting that USA investigators believe Russian hackers may have been behind the effort, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation has been sent to Qatar to help probe.

The president's sharp critique of Qatar pulled the USA directly into a conflict that American diplomats had wanted the bickering parties to resolve among themselves.

Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani spoke to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and also met his counterpart in Germany and was due in Moscow Saturday for further talks.

Trump has taken a starkly different tack, initially praising the move by Gulf nations to sever diplomatic relations with Doha before reversing course on Wednesday.

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