FILE PHOTO: The logo of Al Jazeera Media Network is seen during the annual MIPCOM television program market in Cannes, France, October 17, 2016. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo
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Bahrain and Egypt Thursday apparently joined Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in blocking access to websites run by the pan-Arab satellite network Al-Jazeera, part of a growing regional dispute with Qatar after an alleged hack of its state-run news agency.While Qatar quickly denied the comments in the fake report attributed to ruling emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Saudi-owned satellite channels repeatedly aired them throughout the day Wednesday.A series of tweets said Qatar had ordered its ambassadors to withdraw from Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates over the plot.Qatar has been targeted by hackers before, however.Qatar, home to the forward headquarters of the U.S. military's Central Command and some 10,000 American troops, long has faced criticism from its Arab neighbors over its support of Islamists.Gulf countries led by Saudi Arabia fell out with Qatar over its backing of then-Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, a Brotherhood member. In March 2014, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain recalled their ambassadors from Qatar over the rift. In the time since, Qatar repeatedly and strongly denied it funds extremist groups.
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