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Middle East

Qatar says dispute with Gulf neighbours 'over'

Kuwaiti first Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Sabah al-Khalid al-Sabah (C-L) arrives to attend the 130th meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in Riyadh on March 4, 2014. AFP PHOTO / FAYEZ NURELDINE

KUWAIT CITY: Qatar's dispute with three fellow Gulf states, which withdrew their envoys from Doha last month, is "over", the Qatari foreign minister said Wednesday, while insisting his country had made no concessions.

"The statement issued in Riyadh on April 17 was clear ... For the brothers in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) the dispute is over," Khaled Al-Attiyah told a press conference in Kuwait after a meeting with his Kuwaiti counterpart Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Sabah.

GCC foreign ministers met last week and announced an end to months of unprecedented tensions between Qatar and Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

The three countries recalled their ambassadors from Doha after accusing Qatar of meddling in their internal affairs and supporting the banned Muslim Brotherhood.

Attiyah's statement was the first Qatari comment on the special ministerial meeting held in Saudi Arabia.

"Brothers in the GCC states arrived at understandings which are not considered to be concessions by any party," the Qatari minister said.

Attiyah said it is now "left for the brothers in the GCC states to send their ambassadors back" to Doha.

A statement attributed to Saudi Arabia that the three ambassadors would not return until Doha started to implement the agreement was "inaccurate", he said.

At the meeting in Riyadh, the ministers agreed that the policies of GCC member states should not undermine each other's "interests, security and stability".

Kuwait and Oman also belong to the six-nation GCC.

Attiyah declined to provide details on the Riyadh agreement but reiterated that it signalled an end to the "differences in opinion".

 

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