Qatar Restores Iran Ties

Al-Sulaiti returned to the Iranian capital on Friday after a 20-month hiatus that started in January 2016. Qatar pulled its ambassador in early 2016 after Saudi Arabia's execution of a prominent Shiite cleric sparked attacks on two Saudi diplomatic posts in Iran, a move to show solidarity with the kingdom.

Qatar will reinstate its diplomatic relationship with Iran, its foreign ministry announced Thursday.

This averages at about 15 articles a day since the UAE, Saudi, Bahrain and Egypt severed land, sea and air links with Qatar at the beginning of June due the Gulf state's alleged links to terrorism.

Since the diplomatic dispute with the quartet of Arab nations began in June, Iran has allowed Qatar's national carrier to use its airspace and sent fresh food supplies to Doha. Shiite power Iran also has incorporated the crisis into its regular criticism of the Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia, part of the two Mideast powers' long-running proxy war.

On Thursday, the Qatari Foreign Ministry accused the African country of joining a "campaign of blackmail" when the Chad government chose to close Qatar's embassy earlier this week.

Qatar cooperates with Iran in oil and gas extraction on the continental shelf of the Persian Gulf, which has a significant importance to its economy, and Doha will continue to support its economic ties with Tehran, Hassan Hanizadeh concluded.

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There was no immediate reaction from the Arab nations boycotting Qatar.

Chad shut down the embassy of Qatar in the country on Wednesday, saying that Doha had attempted to destabilize the African country from Libya.

Mediation attempts led by countries such as Kuwait and the United States have so far failed to make headway toward settling the crisis.

The Saudi-led bloc later on released a list of demands, including reducing ties with Iran, that Qatar should fulfil prior to any normalization of relations.

The Qatari decision was conveyed by foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani during a phone call with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif to discuss "bilateral relations and means of boosting and developing them", Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said.

Ulrichsen cautioned that so far, the Saudi moves appeared to be more needling than anything else.


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