Saudi carrier seeks to poach Qatar Airways crews

Judith Bessette
Junho 19, 2017

"I think that as the elder statesman of the Gulf, the king of Saudi Arabia should solve this affair and show leadership", said Erdogan.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and other Arab countries cut diplomatic as well as travel and trade ties with Qatar last week, accusing it of supporting Iran and funding Islamist groups.

Late last month, Putin met the Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the Russian capital of Moscow for talks on the Syrian conflict as well as cutting oil production.

Qatar, which imported 80 per cent of its food from bigger Gulf Arab neighbours before the diplomatic shutdown, has also been talking to Iran and Turkey to secure food and water.

The Amnesty chief said a delegation from the body, which had earlier visited Qatar, documented around 700 instances in which the Saudi-led measures had resulted in rights violations.

Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said Tuesday before a meeting with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson that Qatar's ports and airports are open.

Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies have reportedly been angered by the sometimes critical coverage they receive from Al Jazeera.

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The Gulf state has indicated that it will ask the council to resolve the conflict, one of the sources said, using a dispute resolution mechanism under the 1944 Chicago Convention which is overseen by ICAO.

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain announced on May 5 they were cutting diplomatic ties and closing all connectivity links with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism.

Qatar's Gulf neighbors are even less pleased with its unconventional foreign conduct charted by Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, the emir who came to power in a bloodless coup in 1995.

Erdogan also defended Qatar by saying that Doha has taken decisive stand against the Islamic State.

Saudi Arabia and Iran have clashed over several issues, including Iran's nuclear program and what Saudis see as Tehran's growing influence in the region - especially in Syria, Lebanon and neighboring Yemen.

Pakistan has close ties with the kingdom but also business ventures in Qatar.

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