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Qatar asks UN to help resolve Saudi crisis, blasts ‘stubborn’ blockaders

Qatar has called on the United Nations to help resolve the ongoing diplomatic crisis with Saudi Arabia and its regional allies, a row that Doha says is nowhere near resolution due to the so-called blockaders’ “stubbornness.”

According to Press TV, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt cut ties with Qatar on June 5, imposing a trade and diplomatic embargo on the tiny Persian Gulf country over what they called Doha’s support for terror.

Calling the blockade a “serious violation of international law,” Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Ale Thani, who is on a trip to New York, told UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres on Thursday that “all UN mechanisms” were needed to de-escalate the situation.

“There is a role for the Security Council and for the General Assembly and all the United Nations mechanisms, because of course the violations have continued,” he told reporters after talking to the UN chief.

“We are seeing from the other side of the conflict this stubbornness without even taking any forthcoming step to solve this problem,” he added.

Underscoring Doha’s willingness to resolve the issue through dialogue, Thani said the Saudi-led quartet needed to end their “illegal” actions and avoid further escalation.

“Qatar has already stated more than ten times that we want to solve this issue by dialogue, and we are not willing to escalate, and they need to retreat from all their illegal actions,” he said.

The foreign minister had tried to muster support from a number of Security Council members last month, but the efforts were shut down by Guterres, who insists the solution lies among the regional partners.

So far, Kuwait and Turkey have taken on the mediator role, but their efforts have fallen flat. US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has also taken several shots at resolving the issue to no avail.

Thani emphasized on Thursday that the UN was “the right place” to explore the available solutions.

The Saudis and their allies have provided Qatar with a list of 13 wide-ranging demands and given it an ultimatum to comply with them or face unspecified consequences.

The list includes shutting down the broadcaster Al Jazeera, removing Turkish troops from Qatar’s soil, scaling back cooperation with Iran and ending ties with Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood movement.

Doha has denounced the demands as unreasonable, saying they were meant to force the country to surrender its sovereignty.