A number of Arab countries including Saudi Arabia and Egypt have cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of destabilising the region.
They say Qatar backs militant groups including so-called Islamic State (IS) and al-Qaeda, which Qatar denies. The following Daily Security Brief was published by Le Beck International, a leading specialist security and risk management consultancyWith a dedicated presence in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
The following is a updated list of measures taken thus far by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE, and Egypt as part of the severing of diplomatic relations with Qatar:
- Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE, and Egypt announced that Qatari diplomatic personnel have 48 hours to depart.
- The internationally recognised Hadi-led government in Yemen; Libya’s Bayda-based government, which is aligned with Libyan National Army commander Khalifa Hiftar; and the Maldives followed suit and cut relations with Qatar.
- Qatar was expelled from the intervention in Yemen.
- Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE, and Egypt announced the closure of their airspace and territorial waters to Qatari transport. According to the Saudi General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA), all Qatari airlines and aircraft are barred from landing at Saudi airports effective “immediately”, while its airspace will be closed to Qatar as of 00:01 local time on Tuesday, June 6.
- Multiple airlines suspended flights to and from Doha beginning Tuesday, June 6. This includes, Air Arabia, FlyDubai, Emirates, Eithad Airways, Gulf Air, and EgyptAir. GACA also stated that all Saudi airlines, both private and commercial, will be barred from flying to Qatar either with indirect or direct flights effective “immediately”.
- According to the GACA statement, non-Saudi and non-Qatari airlines and aircraft that wish to fly to Qatar using Saudi airspace “should communicate within one week” with GACA in order to obtain the necessary approval.
- Saudi Arabia announced the closure of its land border with Qatar.
- Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the UAE stated that Qatari citizens will not be permitted to enter or transit through the country, while Qatari residents and visitors have been given 14 days to leave. Similarly, their own citizens are barred from travelling to, residing in, or passing through Qatar.
- The offices of Doha-based Al-Jazeera were closed in Saudi Arabia and its local employees reportedly instructed to submit their resignations.
In Qatar, reports indicate that there has been a rush on supermarkets, including because the country imports the majority of its food, a good proportion of which comes through the now-closed Saudi land border.