Saudi Arabia and its allies have presented Qatar with a 13-point list of demands, incuding shutting the Al-Jazeera TV network, cutting back diplomatic ties with Iran, severing relations with the Muslim Brotherhood and ending the urkish military presence in Qatar.
Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain issued the ultimatum on June 23 and gave Qatar 10 days to respond. This ultimatum amounts to calling for a total capitulation. If Qatar rejects it, the Saudi-led block may consider “other options” in solving the ongoing Qatar crisis. It may attempt to use a military force against the Arab nation or to implement a “cold war” approach against Doha.
On Saturday, Qatar confirmed that it is reviewing the presented demands.
“We are reviewing these demands out of respect for … regional security and there will be an official response from our ministry of foreign affairs,” Sheikh Saif al-Thani, the director of Qatar’s government communications office, said.
On Wednesday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had asked the four countries to make their demands “reasonable and actionable”.
However, Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, quoted by Al-Jazeera, said: “The US secretary of state recently called upon the blockading nations to produce a list of grievances that was ‘reasonable and actionable’.
“The British foreign secretary asked that the demands be ‘measured and realistic.’ This list does not satisfy that [sic] criteria.“
Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain have little options to step back following the release of their ultimatum to Qatar. If the Saudi-led block fails, this will lead to a dramatic fall of their public image and political influence in the Arab world.
It’s unlikely that Saudi Arabia and its allies didn’t consider various scenarious of conflict and hold consultations with the US before issuing of the ultimatum.
Earlier this week, Saudi Arabia’s King Salman appointed his son Mohammad Bin Salman as his successor instead of Mohammad Bin Nayef. This fact was very likely linked with the confrontation against Qatar.
The question is what kind of measures are the Saudis and their allies ready to implement? The Middle East is rapidly heading to another military conflict and a threat of another global war is growing with it. …