Decisions Loom for Qatar as Arab Countries Harden Stance

The tense standoff between Qatar and a group of Middle East countries that includes Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates is nearing the one-month mark with no resolution in sight. Events began to unfold on June 4 when the Arab nations abruptly severed diplomatic ties with Qatar, citing Doha’s support for Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood as well as U.S. designated terrorist groups such as Hamas, Hezbollah, al Qaeda, and ISIS, which they say destabilize the region. 

For weeks, it was unclear what would be required of Qatar to ameliorate the situation, drawing criticism from U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson for the lack of any progress to resolve the problem.  Last Friday, the four countries finally sent Qatar a list of 13 onerous demands that it must accept within ten days for relations to be normalized.

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