17:56 GMT +313 November 2019
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    Qatar's Prime Minister Sheikh Abdulla Bin Khalifa Al-Thani inaugurates the International Petroleum Technology conference in Doha, Qatar

    Qatar to Attend Gulf Summit in Mecca Amid Blockade

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    DOHA (Sputnik) - Qatar will take part in a high-level summit of the Gulf Cooperation Council summit in Saudi Arabia for the first time since the introduction of the blockade of the emirate by neighbouring countries almost two years ago, the Qatari Foreign Ministry told Sputnik on Wednesday.

    "Qatar's Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani will represent Qatar at an emergency summit in Mecca," the ministry said.

    Saudi Arabia has called for urgent meetings of the regional Gulf Cooperation Council and the Arab League in Mecca on May 30 to discuss escalating tensions in the region.

    Saudi King Salman suggested holding the summits following escalation of tensions in the region. On 12 May, four oil tankers, among them two Saudi vessels and a UAE-flagged ship, were attacked in the Gulf of Oman. No casualties or oil spill were caused by the incident. 

    Earlier this week, US National Security Adviser John Bolton claimed that the attack on the oil tankers "almost certainly came from Iran", without providing any evidence for his words. However, neither Saudi Arabia nor the UAE have blamed Tehran for the attacks.

    READ MORE: Saudi King Invites Qatar's Emir to Summits in Mecca — Report

    Qatari Prime Minister's participation in a Gulf summit in Mecca is going to become one of the first high-level meetings since Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the UAE had imposed a land, sea, and air blockade on Qatar in June 2017. The move came as the quartet accussed the country of supporting "terrorism", saying that Doha was propelling the Muslim Brotherhood movement. Qatar rejected the accusations as baseless.

    summit, tensions, security, Gulf Cooperation Council, John Bolton, Gulf States, UAE, Iran, United States, Qatar, Saudi Arabia
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