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Tillerson’s ouster is not a victory for countries blockading Qatar, says expert

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on 16 February 2018 [Murat Kaynak/Anadolu Agency]
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on 16 February 2018 [Murat Kaynak/Anadolu Agency]

The sacking of US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is not a victory for the countries which are blockading Qatar, the Professor of Political Sciences at Kuwait University told Quds Press on Tuesday. Abdullah Al-Shayji said that he had expected this measure to be taken by President Donald Trump owing to the differences of opinion between him and Tillerson.

“The differences between the two men are known,” explained Al-Shayji. “Tillerson has described his president as a moron and there have been differences between them on the US position towards North Korea, Iran’s nuclear programme the, Syrian and Gulf crises and Russia.”

The professor is a specialist in US affairs. He ruled out any idea that this can be seen as a victory for the Qatar blockade countries. “Trump is not advised by anyone when he takes his decisions,” he pointed out, “and referring this decision to the countries imposing a siege on Qatar is an exaggeration. I do not think this is true, although a lot of writers supporting the siege on Qatar might claim otherwise.”

Opinion: Did UAE lobbying instigate Tillerson’s sacking?

Last week, the BBC revealed that an American businessman close to the UAE had applied pressure on Trump to oust Tillerson. The BBC’s revelation, which was based on leaked e-mails, noted that the reason for this pressure was due to Tillerson’s position in not supporting the UAE’s stance in the crisis with Qatar.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt announced on 5 June last year that they were cutting diplomatic ties with Qatar and imposing a siege on the small Gulf State. The government in Qatar was accused of harbouring and supporting terrorism, which it continues to deny.

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