Dialogue only way out of Gulf crisis: Qatar’s envoy
July 18 2017 01:05 AM
Ambassador Abdulaziz Ali al-Naama

Qatar faced and still faces a politically-motivated campaign orchestrated by the siege countries that targets the state and its sovereignty, the country’s ambassador to Greece Abdulaziz Ali al-Naama has said.
In an interview with Greek newspaper Kathimerini, ambassador al-Naama said that the campaign is being led by parties trying to abuse Qatar and demonise it by exercising pressure in order to thwart its efforts in boosting security and stability at the international and regional levels.
The ambassador said Qatar still believes that the only way out of the crisis, that it had no hand in, is dialogue rather than orders and dictations, adding that Qatar still awaits the return of its Arab brothers to the dialogue table.
He said the media campaign carried out against Qatar has been prepared in advance, with roles divided between Gulf and Arab sides.
He added that the campaign started after the Riyadh Arab and Islamic summit on May 21, in which US President Donald Trump took part, with the US president’s speech featuring remarks on the importance of Qatar’s role as a significant strategic partner in combating terrorism, which, he said, affirms the invalidity of the allegations of these entities, which continue to fabricate links between Qatar and terrorism.
The ambassador said the campaign started after a meeting between His Highness the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and Custodian of The Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud in Jeddah on May 1 and after a ministerial meeting for GCC states on May 17.
After that, he added, the Riyadh summit took place on May 21 and the siege countries never mentioned any bilateral differences during any of these meetings.
Al-Naama said that claims by the campaign parties that Qatar co-operates with Tehran at the expense of the Gulf interests are baseless, adding that Doha had recalled its ambassador to Iran after the burning down of Saudi embassy in Tehran and never reinstated him since then.
The phone call between the Emir and the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on May 27, which was mentioned by the campaign parties, took place as part of annual protocol of extending greetings on the advent of the holy month of Ramadan, and came under the policy of GCC states to support dialogue with Iran, the ambassador told the Greek newspaper.
The ambassador said that claims and fabrications that were published regarding the visit of HE the Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani to Iraq on May 22 and his meeting with General Qasem Soleimani are baseless, adding that the visit took place in order to extend an invitation to the Iraqi prime minister to visit Qatar and also as part of the settlement of the issue of the Qatari citizens who were kidnapped in Iraq.
Ambassador al-Naama expressed regret about the land, sea and air siege of Qatar that followed the media campaign as well as the severing of diplomatic ties in a way that, he said, doesn’t happen among states that have normal diplomatic ties.
The ambassador expressed Qatar’s regret that the three fraternal countries couldn’t find a more important and pressing issue for their peoples than trying to harm Qatar.
He noted that no one can dismiss the role of the United States nowadays as the great power, pointing to the US administration’s efforts to encourage the different parties to sit at the dialogue table and to support the Kuwaiti initiative led by the Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah.
The Qatari ambassador said one of the signs of the US administration’s keenness on the settlement of the Gulf crisis was the recent agreement between Qatar and the United States on combating terrorism and eradicating its sources, which, he added, came within continuous bilateral co-operation between the two friendly countries and a result of joint work and the exchange of expertise and information.
He added that it reflects serious work and intense talks that took place to promote the outcomes of the Riyadh summit.
The ambassador said Qatar, which was repeatedly accused of financing terrorism, has become the first country to sign an agreement with the United States on combating terrorism and its financing. He added that Qatar hopes that signing the agreement would be a model for GCC states  to unite in counterterrorism efforts.
Ambassador al-Naama said Qatar relies on its stance on international laws and conventions and its position is humanitarian and ethical first and foremost, adding that, while it wants to preserve ties with its brothers and neighbours, Qatar will never let go of its sovereignty and cannot allow any party to interfere in its internal affairs.
On Greece providing Qatar with its products, the ambassador said commercial ties between the two countries have been there for a while and have witnessed quantitative and qualitative progress.
He added that Greek expats are helping in Qatar’s renaissance in several fields, and expressed hope that commercial ties will grow and develop so that the two countries would become trade partners. - QNA

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