On Saturday, September 9, Saudi Arabia suspended dialogue with Qatar and accused it of ‘distorting facts’ after a phone call between the rulers of both nations which could have had a hopeful outcome for the three month long Gulf row.
Qatar’s emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani spoke by the telephone with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman on September 8. Both rulers discussed the Gulf row and the telephone call was acknowledged by the state media of both countries.
The call came after Kuwait’s emir, who has been an unsuccessful in mediating the dispute so far, met Donald Trump on September 7. At the meeting, Trump himself offered to mediate.
Post the call between Saudi Arabia’s and Qatar’s rulers, the Saudi Press Agency stated that it would publish further details once the Crown Prince speaks to the leaders of Bahrain, United Arab Emirates and Egypt. But the Qatar News Agency published details stating that Doha and Riyadh would be sending envoys to discuss the dispute. It also said that the call took place after Trump himself spoke to Sheikh Tamim and that the Saudi and Qatari leaders ‘stressed the need to resolve this crisis by sitting down to the dialogue to ensure unity and stability’ of Gulf countries.
Reacting angrily to Qatar’s statement, Saudi Arabia issued a second statement stating Qatar’s statement did not have ‘any relevance to the truth.’ Saudi Press Agency also stated ‘This proves that the authority in Qatar is not serious in dialogue and continues its previous policies. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia declares that any dialogue or communication with the authority in Qatar shall be suspended until a clear statement explaining its position is made in public.