Bahrain Suspends Talks with Qatar on Border Dispute
Bahrain said it suspended talks Friday with Qatar on a long-standing border dispute between the two Gulf Arab states, accusing Doha of failing to respond to its proposals, Reuters reported Friday.
A foreign ministry statement was quoted by the agency as saying that Bahrain would suspend talks at a committee, headed by the two states' crown princes, which was formed to help resolve the dispute over small but potentially oil and gas-rich islands in the Gulf.
"Bahrain made serious attempts to reach a brotherly solution to all matters of the boundary dispute, through the work of the high committee," said the statement, carried Saturday by the daily Gulf News.
Bahrain submitted suggestions but, surprisingly, has so far not received a positive response, the statement added, without giving details of the proposals.
Reuters added that Bahrain had no choice but to set aside the work of the high joint committee, and to wait to see the outcome of court proceedings.
In 1991, Qatar took the case to the International Court of Justice in the Hague. The court is expected to start hearings later this month on the dispute over the islands, controlled by Bahrain since the 1930s but also claimed by Qatar, added the daily Gulf News.
The two Gulf Arab states had recently agreed on a series of economic and political steps to improve ties. The measures, Reuters added, include exchange of ambassadors, easing travel regulations and conducting a study on building a causeway across a channel between the two small countries - (Several Sources)
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