The continuing blockade of Qatar makes no sense, writes The Financial Times
Qatar has been undergoing an illegal blockade from neighbouring countries since last June. Almost 11 months after its start, it shows no signs of ending anytime soon.
However, that has not stopped foreign newspapers from writing about how senseless the entire blockade of Qatar is.
London-based Financial Times is the latest newspaper to say the blockade made no sense and that it was time for Saudi Arabia and the UAE to think about starting a climbdown, reported Gulf Times.
The newspaper said that a sustained propaganda campaign, which involved all types of tactics, had failed thus far to intimidate Qatar into bending to the will of rival dynasties.
“It’s symptomatic nonetheless of how riven the Gulf states still are 10 months since Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates initiated a trade and diplomatic embargo on Qatar, to the detriment of all,” it read.
The British newspaper said differences between the Gulf states could be resolved diplomatically, but Saudi Arabia and the UAE chose instead to escalate the feud into another crisis that the Middle East does not need, reported Qatar Tribune.
“Given how far Saudi and the UAE have gone to whip up anti-Qatari sentiments, a sudden climbdown is unlikely. But it’s high time they moved in that direction. Toning down the rhetoric would be a start. Lifting the blockade incrementally should be the next,” it said in the editorial.
Saudi Arabia has long resented the reluctance of the geographically smaller nation on its eastern flank to accept a shadow role, the paper said. Instead, with the independent powers of patronage that Qatar has cultivated thanks to its prodigious gas reserves, Doha has adopted a consistently independent foreign policy stance.
Financial Times said the blockade had not been able to break Qatar’s will.
“The emirate can afford, however, to weather the storm. It’s the richest nation per capita in the world. Moreover, damage to the investment climate in the Gulf has been shared by all. Sensibly, Doha has resisted the temptation to retaliate. It has also, by most accounts, rowed back on foreign adventurism.”
For the US, Qatar is an important ally and hosts the country’s largest offshore air base.
“US President Donald Trump seems now to be losing patience. He has offered to host a Camp David summit in September. The parties to this needless dispute should use the months before to start a thaw,” the opinion piece concluded.
Picture courtesy: Financial Times
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