OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Israel is angry with Qatar over the Gulf emirate’s growing ties with Gaza’s Hamas rulers, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said Thursday.
“We are angry with Qatar because it supports Hamas,” Yigal Palmor told AFP.
Palmor was responding to questions about a report in Maariv newspaper which said Israel was to sever all remaining ties with Doha over its “widespread and ongoing anti-Israeli activity.”
“[The article] says that we want to cut relations with them, but there are no relations: they cut off relations with us,” he said.
Qatar technically severed ties with the Jewish state during Operation Cast Lead, Israel’s massive 22-day assault on Gaza which began at the end of December 2008.
But although the head of the Israeli delegation in Doha had been ordered to leave, the Qatari authorities had allowed the delegation’s offices to remain open in order not to totally end the relationship, Maariv said.
According to the paper, top officials at the Foreign Ministry have written a classified report outlining steps that Israel intends to implement “in the near future” against Qatar.
Israel is also angry at Doha on account of the legal and political aid it is providing to the Palestinians ahead of their bid to seek U.N. membership in September – help provided by Qatar in its role as chair of the Arab League’s monitoring committee, Maariv said.
In March, had shut down the delegation’s Doha offices, the report said.