US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who forged extensive ties in the Gulf as CEO of ExxonMobil, would hold talks with leaders in Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
DOHA — US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrived in Kuwait on Monday for talks aimed at resolving the crisis triggered by the cutoff of links with Qatar by Saudi Arabia and Arab allies.
He immediately held talks with Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah who is leading the mediation effort between the Gulf states, the official KUNA news agency reported.
Tillerson is due to discuss the crisis later with Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al Sabah.
UK National Security Adviser Mark Sidwell, who was also received by the emir, is scheduled to attend part of the meeting between Tillerson and the Kuwaiti foreign minister.
In Doha, a Western diplomat said creation of a “terror finance monitoring mechanism” would feature in the talks, but declined to elaborate.
The State Department said Tillerson, who forged extensive ties in the Gulf as CEO of ExxonMobil, would hold talks with leaders in Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
He was flying from Istanbul where he attended an international petroleum conference.
RC Hammond, a senior adviser to Tillerson, said he would explore ways to end a stalemate following Qatar’s rejection of 13 demands issued as condition for ending sanctions.
“The trips to Saudi Arabia and Qatar are about the art of the possible,” said Hammond, who added that the 13 demands “are done” and “are not worth revisiting as a package. Individually there are things in there that could work.”
Meanwhile, UAE Ambassador to the Republic of India, Dr. Ahmed Abdul Rahman Al Banna, on Monday met with MJ Akbar, Indian Minister of State for External Affairs, at the ministry’s Headquarters in New Delhi.
The measures taken against Qatar were aimed at discouraging terrorism, harbouring terrorists and interfering in the internal affairs of the Gulf States and other Arab countries, said Dr Ahmed Abdul Rahman Al Banna, UAE ambassador to India
Banna explained the measures taken by the United Arab Emirates, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kingdom of Bahrain, and the Arab Republic of Egypt against Qatar, stressing that the UAE is an integral part of the Gulf Co-operation Council, and thus its most important responsibility is to maintain the security and stability of the council’s member states.
Banna affirmed that the measures taken against Qatar were aimed at discouraging terrorism, harbouring terrorists and interfering in the internal affairs of the Gulf States and other Arab countries. These measures came after all attempts to discourage Qatar from supporting terrorism, Islamic extremist groups, and the citizenship and protection of citizens of other countries.
He also explained the decision to sever diplomatic relations with Qatar, and the closure of all land, air and sea ports with them, which include preventing the entry and transit of Qatari nationals to the UAE for security reasons. He also justified the reasons of the decision. — Agencies