Qatari Emir vis­its Turkey to Dis­cuss rift

Las Vegas Review-Journal - - WORLD - By Suzan Fraser The As­so­ci­ated Press

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkey said Thurs­day it wants Qatar and its Arab neigh­bors to over­come dif­fer­ences through di­a­logue and a “broth­erly” man­ner as Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Ha­mad Al Thani was set to ar­rive in Ankara on his first for­eign trip since a diplo­matic cri­sis erupted.

Sheikh Tamim is sched­uled to meet with Turk­ish President Re­cep Tayyip Er­do­gan to dis­cuss ties as well as the three-month-old diplo­matic rift be­tween the Gulf neigh­bors.

“We sup­port a res­o­lu­tion of the cri­sis through a broth­erly man­ner and through di­a­logue,” Ibrahim Kalin, Er­do­gan’s spokesman, told re­porters. “This cri­sis only serves the en­e­mies of this re­gion.”

Sheikh Tamim’s trip Thurs­day to Turkey comes as a Qatari ex­ile held a con­fer­ence in Lon­don that ex­plored in part a “blood­less coup” over­throw­ing Doha’s gov­ern­ment.

The con­fer­ence was or­ga­nized by Khalid al-hail. An­a­lysts and ex­perts have sug­gested al-hail is be­ing sup­ported by the Arab coun­tries now boy­cotting Qatar, some­thing he de­nies.

“We have a cri­sis, the gov­ern­ment of Qatar has to ad­mit it,” al-hail said. “And I don’t be­lieve the cur­rent regime in Qatar is act­ing for the good of my peo­ple.”

Also at­tend­ing the event was Shlomo Brom, a re­tired Is­raeli gen­eral who is now a re­searcher at the In­sti­tute for Na­tional Se­cu­rity Stud­ies, a re­spected think tank in Tel Aviv. His pres­ence was a sur­prise, es­pe­cially given Arab na­tions’ con­cerns over peace be­tween Is­rael and the Pales­tini­ans.

Turkey has been try­ing to me­di­ate be­tween Qatar and its Gulf neigh­bors but has also shown sol­i­dar­ity with Doha by de­liv­er­ing sup­plies and boost­ing mil­i­tary ties, in­clud­ing send­ing troops to a Turk­ish base there.

Saudi Ara­bia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emi­rates cut ties with Qatar in June over its close ties to Iran and its al­leged sup­port for ex­trem­ists.

Qatar has de­nied sup­port­ing ex­trem­ism, say­ing the cri­sis is po­lit­i­cally mo­ti­vated.

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