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(PPPfocus.com) SAUDI ARABIA SAYS QATAR AIRSPACE CLOSURE TO PROTECT CITIZENS FROM THREATS

Posted by: Biniam Tekle

Date: Tuesday, 13 June 2017


SAUDI ARABIA SAYS QATAR AIRSPACE CLOSURE TO PROTECT CITIZENS FROM THREATS

The measures meant cancelling dozens of daily flights by Qatar Airways and carriers from those countries, and also mean Qatari aircraft have to make long diversions, mainly around Bahrain and the vast airspace of Saudi Arabia. Qatar has also accused Saudi Arabia of backing the militant group.

According to Qatar’s foreign minister, 16 per cent of the country’s food supplies are usually transported across its land border with Saudi Arabia.

The Eritrean ministry of information said Monday that the current Gulf crises is not a matter that requires invitation of the Eritrean government or solicitation of its vote.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain accuse Qatar of supporting terrorism networks in the region.

While calling on Qatar and the Gulf nations to ease tensions, the United Nations said it is working to resolve the crises.

Analysts estimate that a political standoff between Qatar and other Arab states will cost the airline heavily.

On 5 June, the maritime authorities in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain said they had closed their ports to Qatari-flagged vessels.

Larger container ships are unable to dock at ports in Qatar due in part to shallow waters, so shipping lines use feeder services, which transport containers from the larger regional port of Jebel Ali in the UAE.

Yemen, the Maldives, Mauritius, Mauritania and the eastern-based government in divided Libya also announced a break in relations with Doha, while Jordan and Djibouti said they would lower the level of diplomatic contacts with Qatar.

Qatar Airways has been hit hard by the dispute, with 18 destinations now out of bounds for the airline. “The impact is quite a lot of disruption, but in the end it’s an interesting challenge and one that we need to deal with by being as agile as possible”.

Qatari officials have repeatedly stated that the ultimatum issued by Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain for Qatari citizens to leave was a violation of human rights that required United Nations intervention. “If this were to happen, it would be such an escalation from Qatar’s side, the UAE and Saudi would up the ante even more”. Moutaz Al Khayyat, Chairman of Power International Holding, made a decision to fly 4,000 cows back to Qatar for a constant supply of fresh milk in the country.

Qatar is dependent on Gulf neighbors for food imports to feed its 2.5 million strong population – the bulk of which are expatriates – and reports have emerged of panic buying at supermarkets amid fears of a food shortage during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The new flights have increased Iranian air traffic by 17 per cent, the official state news agency has reported.


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