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Gulf states, Egypt waive preconditions for reconciliation with Qatar

January 6, 2021 at 9:32 pm

Officials from Egypt, Saudi, Bahrain, UAE discuss their blockade of Qatar [Anadolu Agency]

The four Arab countries that had imposed a three-year siege on Qatar have waived their 13 preconditions as they announce reconciliation with it on Tuesday.

Following the announcement of their land, sea and air blockade in 2017, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt demanded that Qatar meet 13 preconditions before ending the siege.

Among the preconditions were the closure of Al-Jazeera news network, closing the Turkish military base in Qatar, stalling relations with Iran and ending support for the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.

The UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash indicated that his country had placed its confidence in Saudi Arabia to lead the talks which led to ending the siege.

Speaking to CNN, Gargash conveyed that the idea was to try to lay down rules of non-interference and agree on issues that affect all of the countries in the region: “Including extremism and terrorism, which is an integral part of the agreement.”

He added: “We are confident and look forward with enthusiasm, and we hope to work with each other to move forward, confident that such a destructive rift that we have passed through will not be repeated.”

Egypt: Opening border does not mean full reconciliation with Qatar

When asked about the 13 demands, he responded: “My point is, and we have always said that, that the 13 demands at that time were expressing the maximum. As for the negotiating position, I think that what we have reached today is the general outlines that mainly govern relations between the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and in the case of Egypt as well, which is a member of the Arab League.”

He concluded: “So these were what could be called the general outlines of how this relationship should proceed. I think we are very satisfied with this, and we want to build on it and we want to look to the future to build on and make sure that the GCC countries in this very troubled region are more solid and unified and look to the future in perfect harmony.”