Qatari premier holds talks with Japanese FM in Doha


Qatari Prime Minister Abdullah bin Nasser Al Thani on Saturday met with Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono in Doha to discuss regional developments and the ongoing standoff between Qatar and a four-nation Arab bloc led by Saudi Arabia.

According to the Qatar News Agency (QNA), the two men also discussed means of enhancing relations between Doha and Tokyo.

Earlier the same day, Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani called Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman to discuss means of resolving the crisis in inter-Arab relations, according to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

The SPA had earlier quoted an unnamed Saudi Foreign Ministry source as saying that Riyadh had "suspended dialogue with Doha until Qatar clearly articulates its position" regarding the crisis.

According to the QNA, Saturday's phone call between the Saudi crown prince and the Qatari emir was arranged by U.S. President Donald Trump.

In June, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain all severed diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism in the region.

The four countries also imposed an embargo on Qatar, demanding that it meet a long list of demands -- including the closure of pan-Arab broadcaster Al Jazeera -- or face further sanctions.

Doha, meanwhile, has so far refused to comply, strenuously denying charges that it supports terrorism and describing efforts to isolate it as a violation of international law.

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