Kuwait tries to mediate crisis between Qatar, Arab nations

"His message was that we need unity in the region to fight extremist ideology and terrorist financing", a United States official told Reuters news agency. Mr. Trump said he hoped the move would be beginning of the end to the horror of terrorism, pointing the finger at Doha for backing extremist groups - allegations the tiny Gulf state strongly denies.

The emir of Kuwait is mediating in the dispute and the president of Turkey has also offered to help, saying isolation and sanctions will not resolve the crisis.

The rift has affected global oil prices, hit travel plans and sown confusion among businesses.

President Donald Trump talks with Saudi King Salman as they pose for photos with leaders at the Arab Islamic American Summit, at the King Abdulaziz Conference Center, Sunday, May 21, 2017, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Trump on Tuesday took credit for the Middle Eastern countries breaking diplomatic relations with Qatar.

Qatar was also expelled from the Saudi-led coalition fighting Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen. Qatar has good relations with Iran, but hosts the USA air base.

What do the Saudis want?

But another Arab nation, Jordan, later Tuesday announced that after studying the causes of the crisis with Qatar it was downgrading its diplomatic representation in Doha, said Mohammed al-Momani, minister for media affairs, the Petra state news agency reported.

Maersk, the world's biggest container shipping line, said it was unable to transport goods in or out of Qatar because it could not take them through the UAE port of Jebel Ali. "It has to choose whether it must move in one direction or another direction". The countries also said they would eject Qatar's diplomats.

He added that Qatar was undermining the Palestinian Authority and Egypt by supporting Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, and said stopping these policies would "contribute to stability in the Middle East".

The emirate has directly and indirectly supported Islamist groups across the Arab world, including the Muslim Brotherhood.




What is happening in Qatar?

A poster of the Emir of Qatar Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani.

Disruption to airspace in the Gulf began on Tuesday morning local time.

Qatar is also a major regional diplomatic player and global investor and is set to host the World Cup, football's biggest tournament, in 2022.

The UAE's state-owned Etihad Airways, meanwhile, said all travelers holding Qatari passports were now prohibited from travelling to or transiting through the emirates.

The fracas pits Qatar - a country smaller than CT and the world's biggest producer of liquefied natural gas - against Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain.

Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud (R) meets with Emir of Kuwait Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, June 6, 2017.

The campaign to isolate Qatar disrupted trade in commodities from crude oil to metals and food, and deepened fears of a possible shock to the global natural gas market, where it is a major player.

Does anyone sympathise with Qatar?

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said isolating Qatar would "not resolve any problems" and called for "mutual dialogue".

Trump wrote on Twitter that his recent trip to the Middle East was "already paying off" and cast that speech he made in Saudi Arabia as the inspiration for a decision by Arab powers to sever ties with Qatar in protest at what they say is the Gulf nation's support for terrorism.

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