With the passing of nearly five months since the tiny Gulf emirate of Qatar refused to comply with the Arab Quartet’s demands, Arab parliamentarians and ministers are calling to revoke Doha’s membership in all Arab councils and leagues.
An Egyptian parliamentarian called for further escalatory steps against Doha by freezing its membership in the Arab League, following Bahraini Foreign Minister Sheikh Khalid Bin Ahmed al-Khalifa’s request to revoke Qatar’s membership in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).
Parliamentarian Mustafa Bakri stated that Khalifa’s request came late; pointing out that Qatar’s membership in the Arab League must be frozen after its support of violence and terrorism has been proven.
He added that freezing its membership in the GCC is not enough; there must be diplomatic and economic measures to force the Qatari government to comply with the demands.
“The Qatari people will not wait too long to overthrow this regime, which pushed them into further problems with Arab countries. The overthrow of this regime is very near,” Bakri said.
Qatar’s ongoing support and funding of terrorism will inevitably be met by escalation from the Arab Quartet, said Deputy of Parliament’s National Defense and Security Committee Yahya Kadwani.
He added that the Arab Quartet have yet to take a decisive stand against Qatar to curb the spread of terrorism worldwide.
Egypt’s parliament seconded the Bahraini foreign minister’s request to revoke Qatar’s membership in the Gulf Cooperation Council.
“Qatar’s membership in the Gulf Cooperation Council should be suspended since it does not deserve the honor of belonging to the alliance,” the Bahraini foreign minister tweeted; adding that Bahrain wouldn’t attend the GCC summit and sit with Qatar.
On June 5, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Libya and Yemen decided to cut all diplomatic ties with Qatar, hurling allegations that the state supports terrorism. Ports and airspaces were cut off to Qatari vessels. Since then, Kuwait has played the role of mediator to put an end to this rift. Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson held several meetings with the disputed parties, but the discussions have not yet led to a settlement.
The Arab countries listed 13 demands to be met by Qatar, including severing ties with terrorist groups, closing down the pan-Arab Al-Jazeera satellite channel, downgrading ties with arch-rival Iran and the closure of the Turkish air base in Qatar.