Tillerson says Qatar resolution may take a while
Washington’s Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said his diplomatic work to resolve a dispute between Qatar and four Arab countries could have produced a greater possibility of direct negotiations but warned that the dispute “may take some time.”
“I think there is a feeling that it will be changed at least open to talk to each other and this was not the case before coming,” said Tillerson, speaking in reporters plane after his departure from Doha, Qatar.
“We have filed documents with both sides while we were here, which sets out some ways forward.”
However, he added that some issues will be complex “so the final and final resolution may take some time.”
The top US diplomat spent the first part of the week to travel between Turkey, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Qatar in an attempt to resolve a dispute that complicates the administration’s priority trump defeat ISIS.
All countries are members of the anti-ISIS coalition and Qatar is home to the largest US military base in the Middle East.
“The four countries are very important to the United States,” said Tillerson. “We have relations with four of them that are very important from the point of view of national security.”
For now, however, Tillerson pointed out that the parties “do not even talk to each other at any level”.
The goal is to discuss the problems face-to-face, Tillerson said. “There is a long list of problems, but it has also provided us with advice on how they might think we deal with it,” he added.
The interviews helped to understand how “some of these problems are emotional,” said Tillerson, who said he had spoken to sparring neighbors “every two days,” as the course began on June 5 as a diplomat
Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt broke diplomatic relations with Qatar, which it accuses of supporting terrorism. Its airspace was closed to the airline of Qatar.
They also banned their citizens from traveling to Qatar or residing in Qatar after giving the citizens of Qatar 14 days to leave the country after the decision was announced on June 5
The dispute reflects the long frustration with Qatar’s foreign policy in the Gulf, including its support for Islamist groups and its relations with Iran, with which Qatar shares the largest gas reserves in the world.
Officials said Gulf restrictions would remain in place until Qatar to meet a series of demands, including the separation of all ties with Iran and “terrorist” groups, the closure of the Qatari media organization to the Yazira, the end of Military cooperation with Turkey and halt the construction of a Turkish military base in its territory and align its foreign policy, military and political relations with its neighbors. Qatar rejected these requests.
Tillerson said that part of his approach was to try to divide the areas of disagreement into “buckets, if you will, I think they are easier to deal with.”
“As for some things in these categories,” said Tillerson, “I think it can be addressed relatively quickly, some of them will be more complex, it will take more time.”
During his trip, Tillerson signed a memorandum of understanding between the United States and Qatar in the fight against terrorism, saying he hoped it could help facilitate progress in the conflict.
However, the other four States responded with a joint statement that the announcement of the memorandum was “insufficient” and that sanctions against Qatar would continue until “just and complete applications ensure that terrorism is treated and that stability and security Established in the region. ”
The statement thanked the United States. Claiming that the memorandum was the result of “repeated pressure and demands” from the four nations to Qatar “to prevent their support of terrorism.” Qatar denies that it finances and supports extremist groups.