03:05 GMT30 May 2020
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    Representatives of the Qatar Armed Forces and the US Air Force Central Command have signed an agreement on a course of action for NATO forces in Qatar amid growing tensions between the US and Iran.

    Qatar hosts the largest US military base in the Middle East, Al Udeid, where 13,000 US military personnel are stationed; from there, the United States conducts operations throughout the region. 

    As the US continues to move its military assets to the region, Iran has been working on reducing tensions. On Tuesday, Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi met with his Qatari counterpart in Doha and said that Tehran is ready for a dialogue with the Gulf states.

    Mosayeb Naimi, an Iranian political analyst, expert on the Middle East and director general of the Iranian state Arabic-language newspaper Al-Wafag, said that despite the US troops stationed in Qatar and other countries, the likelihood that Qatar or some another state would allow its territory to be used as a staging ground for an attack on Iran is extremely small, because no one wants to be involved in a regional war:

    "Neither the situation in the US itself, nor the situation in the region (Persian Gulf) allows the US to unleash a war. Qatar has previously told Iran and the American side that they can't [let the US] use its territory to attack Iran. The latest actions of the US are tricks of American propaganda and are aimed at clashing Iran and Qatar. Since any country involved in a war with Iran will suffer great losses, no one wants a war. Even the countries that are part of the US coalition: Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. It is unlikely that these two countries will agree to allow the US to use their territory to attack Iran, because that would make them responsible for the attack, and Iran will answer back".

    READ MORE: US Braces for War With Iran As Trump Sides With Military Advisers — Analysts

    The Middle East expert added that a war would destroy the current balance in the region, and so far there have been no statements from Qatar that a coalition against Iran could be formed with the United States.

    "These bases were established during the Iraq crisis. Qatar has repeatedly said that US bases there will not be used against any neighboring country. Qatar stressed this and stated that Iran's support during the economic blockade will never be forgotten", Mosayeb Naimi said.

    Qatar has been blockaded by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt since June 2017. The counties cut diplomatic and economic ties with Doha and accused it of supporting Iran and terrorism. Qatar denied these allegations, but is still isolated from its neighbours. Although this week, for the fist time since the blockade, Qatari diplomats travelled to Saudi Arabia to attend the summit of the Gulf Cooperation Council to discuss the situation around Iran.

    Meanwhile, Iran's deputy foreign minister has said that while the country is ready for war with the US, it still hopes to solve the crisis through dialogue.

    READ MORE: ‘Exclusive Intel' Claims Iran Cuts Funding to Allies Amid Economic War — Report

    The political analyst noted that Iran is the dominant force in the Persian Gulf in terms of its geographical and strategic position and the fact that it has advised all countries in the region to refuse to meet the demands of the United States only proves that it is seeking ways to diffuse tensions:

    "If so far no action has been taken by Iran, it only means that Iran does not want to exacerbate the situation. One should remember that countries in the region that would start a war would not be able to end it, because the scale of the war will increase as the number of its participants increases. Therefore, Qataris will never take such a risk and compromise the security of their country. Also, with the start of a war, the issue of oil transit through the Persian Gulf, which is of great importance for the West, will arise", Mosayeb Naimi concluded.

    The views expressed in this article are solely those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


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