Qatar Today - - AFFAIRS > LOCAL -

That the last rift be­tween the GCC coun­tries was mended in a flimsy and half-hearted fash­ion was made ob­vi­ous in the de­vel­op­ments of the last few weeks that saw old ten­sions rise to the sur­face once again. The al­ready strained re­la­tion­ship be­tween Cairo and Doha was sorely tested when Qatar raised con­cerns about Egypt's uni­lat­eral mil­i­tary strike against al­leged ISIL tar­gets in Libya, cit­ing it had been done with­out dis­cus­sions with other Arab states, with­out re­gard for civil­ian ca­su­al­ties and might tip the scales of the Libyan con­flict. Egypt of course had con­ducted air strikes on its trou­bled neigh­bour af­ter a video of ISIL mil­i­tants be­head­ing 21 Cop­tic Chris­tian Egyp­tians was re­leased on­line. Cairo re­sponded to Qatar in rather harsh terms, ac­cus­ing it of sup­port­ing ter­ror­ism. This led to Qatar re­call­ing its am­bas­sador from Egypt. While ini­tially the GCC had stood by Qatar and re­buked Egypt for mak­ing this charged state­ment, it quickly back­tracked on this the same evening when GCC sec­re­tary gen­eral Ab­dul­latif Al Zayani said in a state­ment, “GCC states have stressed their full sup­port to Egypt and its broth­erly peo­ple in fight­ing ter­ror­ism and pro­tect­ing its cit­i­zens at home and abroad.”

A hand­out pic­ture re­leased by the Egyptian Min­istry of De­fence on Fe­bru­ary 16 shows an Egyptian air force fighter jet land­ing at an undis­closed lo­ca­tion in Egypt fol­low­ing air strikes in Libya. AFP PHOTO / HO / EGYPTIAN MIN­ISTRY OF DE­FENCE

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