MIDDLE EAST

Gulf states cut diplomatic ties with Qatar for accusation of support to terrorism

GULF STATES CUT DIPLOMATIC TIES WITH QATAR FOR ACCUSATION OF SUPPORT TO TERRORISM

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Libya, Maldives and Yemen said Monday they cut diplomatic ties with Qatar. 5 Arab states said the move was due to Qatar's "practices that strengthen terrorism and its support to [terrorist] organizations in Yemen, including al-Qaeda and Daesh.

Qatar has been cut off by almost all of its neighboring countries by a Saudi-led coalition. Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, Libya, Yemen and the Maldives have severed diplomatic ties to Doha for its alleged support for terrorism.

The Qatari stock market has tumbled following the diplomatic row.

Following the shocking move, all transport links to Qatar were cut and Qatari tourists and residents were given just two weeks to leave.

The countries have blocked Qatar from their airspace and requested that all Qatari diplomats leave within 48 hours.

The Saudi-led coalition expelled Doha from participating in the Yemeni conflict.

In one of the worst rifts among the Arab world's most powerful nations, Saudi Arabia alleged that Qatar backed terrorist groups and used their media outlets to broadcast their ideology.

The dispute included Doha's support of the Muslim Brotherhood, and also alleges that Qatar supports Iran, Saudi Arabia's rival in the region.

Major airlines such as Etihad, Emirates and FlyDubai have indefinitely suspended flights to and from Doha starting Tuesday, and an economic crisis looms as Qatar's neighboring countries threaten to carry out a complete land and sea blockade.

Saudi Arabia and Bahrain were the first to sever all diplomatic ties with Qatar, citing national security concerns.

Cairo blamed the Qatari government for "hostile attitudes," sheltering the Muslim Brotherhood on its soil, and backing terror groups threatening the country's national security.

Bahrain's Foreign Ministry accused the Qatari government of destabilizing the country's security and stability and interfering in its affairs.

Qatar has "spread chaos in Bahrain in flagrant violation of all agreements and covenants and principles of international law without regard to values, the law, or morals or consideration of the principles of good neighborliness or commitment to the constants of Gulf relations, and in denial of all previous commitments," it said.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson urged the countries of the Gulf to resolve the issue.

"We certainly would encourage the parties to sit down together and address these differences," he said.

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