UN Security Council Calls for Dialogue to ‘Mend the Fences’ in Gulf Crisis

Published July 4th, 2017 - 12:00 GMT
The Saudi-led blockade of Qatar has hurt the rights of tens of thousands of Qataris and expats, according to Qatar's National Human Rights Commission. (AFP)
The Saudi-led blockade of Qatar has hurt the rights of tens of thousands of Qataris and expats, according to Qatar's National Human Rights Commission. (AFP)
The UN Security Council has stressed dialogue is the best way to resolve the anti-Qatar blockade, nearly a month after the crisis started.
 
China’s UN ambassador said the best way to resolve the crisis between the four major Arab nations and Qatar is for the countries to work out a solution among themselves, suggesting the UN top body would not intervene yet.
 
Liu Jieyi, whose country chairs the current session of the Security Council, told a news conference at UN headquarters in New York on Monday that “we don’t see any other alternative to that.”
 
The four Arab nations – Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain – extended a deadline for Qatar to respond to their demands by another 48 hours on Monday, as Doha struck a defiant toneover the demands while renewing its willingness to engage in a "reasonable dialogue."
 
Liu expressed hope that dialogue and consultations will produce results.
 
He said “whatever the countries can do to mend the fences and to get back to good neighbourly relations, that would certainly be welcomed by China.”
 
This comes a few days after Qatar's foreign minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, met with several non-permanent members of the United Nations Security Council in an effort to gain support over the blockade.
 
The meeting on Friday was attended by all 10 non-permanent members of the Security Council except for Egypt.
 
Speaking to Al Jazeera, Al Thani explained that he provided the members with “updates on the situation” and urged them to “call for a lifting of the blockade on Qatar.”
 
Legal action
 
Qatar's the Minister of Transport and Communications Jassim bin Saif al- Sulaiti met with the Secretary-General of International Maritime Organisation (IMO) Kitack Lim on Monday.
 
The meeting in London focused on the violations of the blockading countries of international and maritime agreements. Qatar says this has caused great damages and dangers to marine navigation in violation to maritime agreements and especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
 
The Qatari minister handed over a dossier documenting the violations by the blockading countries to the IMO which Doha says has affected maritime safety. 

The Saudi-led blockade of Qatar has hurt the rights of tens of thousands of Qataris and expats, according to Qatar's National Human Rights Commission. 

Qatar has responded with a diplomatic offensive to convince the world of its case, while also moving to take legal action to lift or mitigate the blockade with the World Trade Organisation and the International Civil Aviation Organisation as well as the UN.

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