Bahrain: We reject attacks on Saudi Arabia & Qatar’s attempts to politicize Hajj

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Bahrain’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al-Khalifa has emphasized Manama’s stance against any attacks on Saudi Arabia and reiterated their condemnation of Qatar’s attempt to politicize this year’s Hajj pilgrimage.

In an interview with Al Arabiya News Channel’s Panorama political talk show, Al-Khalifa reiterated that there is no siege of Qatar, but “rather a boycott”.

“Using the term ‘siege’ has serious connotations within in international law, but it is important to note that the actions taken against Qatar is simply a boycott to protect our nation’s security and sovereignty,” Al-Khalifa told Al Arabiya.

Bahrain, along with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, decided to economically and diplomatically boycott Qatar two months ago over Doha’s history of supporting and financing terror groups over the years and issued them with a list of 13 demands to abide by.

The demands include closing a Turkish military base in Qatar and shutting down the Al Jazeera pan-Arab television network, which Doha also rejected.

Qatar's Gulf critics accuse Al Jazeera of being a platform for extremists and an agent of interference in their affairs. The network has rejected the accusations and said it will maintain its editorial independence.

“We will not negotiate with Qatar on the 13 demands, but we will discuss on how to implement them,” Al-Khalifa said.

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