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UAE eases Qatar shipping ban amid Gulf blockade

February 21, 2019 at 1:55 am

Workers bring freshly imported products, offloaded from a Qatar Airways cargo plane, to be checked at a climate control centre at the Hamad International Airport in Doha on 20 July 2017. [STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images]

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has announced easing the ban on the shipping of goods between it and Qatar, which has been in place under an ongoing Arab political and economic boycott of Doha since June 2017, a local ports sources reported yesterday.

On 12 February, a circular issued by the state-run Abu Dhabi Ports authority cancelled previous directives banning cargoes of Qatar origin from entering the UAE waters and ports as well as those of Emirati origin from stopping by Qatar’s ports.

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The circular, however, maintained a shipping ban on vessels flying the Qatar flag, owned by Qatari shipping firms or nationals.

An industry source told Reuters the circular applied to all ports in the UAE.

On 5 June 2017, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt have imposed sanctions on Qatar accusing it of cosying up to Iran – their regional arch-rival – and supporting terrorism. Doha denies the accusations.