Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Bahrain (plus the fake official gov. in Yemen) cut ties with Qatar. Oman and Kuwait have not yet and do not appear as if they will.

Egyptians burn Qatari flags in the street in Cairo
You may or may not have heard, but Emirates closed its airways to inbound and outbound flights to Qatar, along with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Egypt, who have severed diplomatic ties with Qatar. Entry by sea is also currently suspended. [Cargo/trade in Qatar is gonna suffer]. This has caused trouble for Omanis and expats who purchased connecting flights through Doha from UAE or KSA. Today was the last day for any flights to and from Qatar to the UAE.

In UAE, Qataris are no longer allowed to enter or transit through the UAE. Qataris in the UAE were given 14 days to exit (still counting) and Qatar's diplomats 48 hours.

Qatar has not retaliated as of yet....which is a good thing for all the Egyptian workers living in Qatar right?

Apparently UAE has also blocked imports from Qatar, including aluminium, and television channels, like Al Jazeerah, and sports networks. Which is kind of lame but whatever UAE.


Qatar has, according to UAE media, and Saudi media, been funding the Muslim Brotherhood (none of the formal MB branches are terrorists, since I've had dealings with a lot people who are part of the Muslim Brotherhood who are against violence of any kind, but they're too anti-women for my tastes as a Sunni woman who follows what the women of the Sahaba did).

Alas, of course any country with a ruling royal family, or with a military coup gov. (hey Egypt) in place wouldn't like the group, as they do not believe someone can rule a Muslim majority country simply by right of blood, or military strength etc... so.... Yeah, I believe that too, and would understand if some Qataris felt that way too. Don't get me wrong, I support Sultan Qaboos NOW because no one else is around to unite the tribes in Oman (we're not rational or good enough Muslims to get over that yet), but I would not do so solely based on off of who his father was etc...

...Or if like, the Muslim Brotherhood could improve female scholarship to the point where it reflected women as people, like Islam does, I'd probably like them, but right now, I don't.

Apparently, lovely UAE media blames Qatar's close ties with Tehran (Iran). Myself I'm like, whaaatttt???

"The leadership certainly chooses its allies unwisely. Because the same false friendship is evident in the close ties between Doha and Tehran. Iran’s actions in the Middle East have cost Doha’s Arab neighbours blood and treasure. There are families in the UAE and Saudi Arabia who mourn their loved ones specifically because of Tehran’s actions. The regime across the Arabian Gulf is no friend to Doha"
-The National, Editorial, Jun 5th

Anyways, Russia and the US have said officially that they don't see how cutting ties with Qatar could help the war on terror. And the KSA and UAE media saying "the Arab states" is kind of funny, because the GCC doesn't include Egypt, Libya, the Maldives, and Yemen (kind of Yemen, since the official gov. in Yemen in a total joke),  and Oman and Kuwait haven't cut ties with Qatar yet.

Qatar's official reaction has been to say that there is no legitimate justification for the actions taken.

Understandably, the hacking incident left UAE and Qatar mad at each other. The email account of Yousef al-Otaiba (UAE ambassador to the US) was hacked (allegedly) and (allegedly) reveals Emirati requests for the US to move their air bases in Qatar to the UAE and (allegedly) contact with some Israeli think-tank. 

...As I haven't seen the emails myself, or know who hacked what, I say allegedly. UAE can be a bully though, when it comes to air space, and airports (they tried to bully Canada once too) so I believe the first allegation. but raise an eye-brow at the second.

Also, on May 23rd someone hacked the website of Qatar News Agency and put up an allegedly false statement by the Emir of Qatar in support of Israel. Who did the hacking is still being investigated.

And of course, the Daily Mail (UK source) said that back in 2015 that a UK consultancy firm had been paid by the UAE to further UAE's foreign policy objectives, which included telling media that Qatar was funding terrorism (believable, but, as far as I know, not substantiated).

Also Saudi and Bahrain have had border land claims disputes with Qatar for years. Like Oman has with UAE and KSA.

As always, I am kind of liking the English Egyptian media, and Al Jazeerah's reporting in this, because they balance two sides better than other media groups. And Oman's English media, of course;).

According to the Times of Oman, and the Oman Observer, our (Omani) foreign affairs bureau are trying to play it safe. Oman's Foreign Affairs Minister was in Qatar "for a private, unofficial visit, that was planned before the recent troubles."

That, and oil prices fell.

According to the other English Omani newspapers, who seem to be reporting what others already reported yesterday about Kuwait trying to stand by Qatar officially, not much else is being reported.

Good job, Oman's English journalism crowd. As ever you do not disappoint me, because ever do I expect you to suck.

So, supporting the freedom to perhaps belong to an Islamic group with any political agenda of running government, and having land disputes, and trade disputes with KSA, Bahrain, and UAE...is probably why Qatar is being cut off...more than funding terror per say, or being buds with Iran.

Anyways, in case you didn't know, that's the deal with Qatar so far.


Rubina said...

Shukran for letting us know what's going on, I was about to go research it, and then your post popped up.

I also want to say that I always look forward to your posts and I simply love the decor you've posted about previously as well as the cultural and cuisine posts. ( I love cooking different types of food from different countries!)

Being from South Africa, I'd love to visit Oman some day.

Hope your Ramadhaan has been going well Insha Allah, and wishing you an early Eid Mubarak.

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

Rubina: I totally forgot to do a Ramadan post! Sorry!

Afwan for reading, and asalaam alaykom. I love decor posts too;). I should do some more cuisine posts. If I do move out of the city I will get more chances too:). I did more cooking when I lived outside Muscat.

Early Eid Mubarak to you too. My husband wants to see South Africa:)

Anonymous said...

What you haven't mentioned is that although flights from Oman to Doha with Qatar Airways are still operating, they now have to take a long, circuitous route since they can no longer fly through UAE or Saudi airspace. The usual 2 hour flight from Salalah is taking 3+ hours as it flies up through Oman into Iran and then back down. This isn't being mentioned anywhere - and Qatar Airways website maintains the flights are running to normal times. This will have huge knock-on effects to connecting flights. My own flight connection next week will no longer be possible. A check on flightradar shows the routes the flights are now taking.

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

Anon: I would think that would be obvious;). Being only certain countries are allowing Qatar flights, previously scheduled ones would have to be re-routed or refunded. I am sure it has destroyed a tonne of people's connections. Sorry for your situation. I've been there before (thanks to Oman police not Qatar airways) and it sucks beyond sucks.

I'd heard the Qatar airways webpage wasn't helpful to many concerning the changes, and I'd assumed it was because of connecting flights etc... due to the flights they could re-route instead of cancel, and were thus not willing to refund the entire ticket fare of a person's journey.

කණ්ඩා ~ Kanda said...

Don't see any end of ongoing conflicts of this region and now we have this on top of all that.

No matter what it seems only outsiders are taking advantage of the petty rivalries and old disputes among Arab countries.

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

Kanda: That would be capitalism at work:)

I think in this case the conflict is totally internally inspired. Non GCC countries are involved but they didn't instigate it.