Qatari foreign minister meets Persian Gulf Arab counterparts in Kuwait amid ongoing dispute

Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani has met his Persian Gulf Arab counterparts in Kuwait ahead of a summit of the six Arab nations of the region.

Reports on Monday said the top Qatari diplomat took part in a meeting with representatives from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain — the other five Arab nations that form the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) — at Bayan Palace in Kuwait City.

His presence in the meeting comes as some members of the GCC have cut diplomatic, trade and travel links with Qatar, accusing the emirate of supporting terrorism. Doha rejects the accusations, saying those countries led by Saudi Arabia are seeking to force Qatar to fall in line with their own foreign policies.

The Qatari FM said on Sunday that the emir of the country, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, would attend the GCC summit on December 5 and 6, despite growing disputes between members.

There has been almost no sign that Qatari authorities would bow to the demands of Saudi Arabia and its allies to restore diplomatic ties. Among the conditions put forward for a full normalization of ties is the need for Qatar to downgrade its relations with Iran and expel foreign troops, including those from Turkey, from military bases in the country.

Kuwait, which is hosting the regional meeting, has been a major hub for international efforts to mediate the six-month dispute between Qatar and its former Arab allies. Top officials from the country have, to no avail, shuttled between Arab and Western capitals in recent months to find a solution to the crisis.

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