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US ‘deeply disappointed and troubled’ by IRGC presence in Qatar

Earlier this month, the US designated Qatar as one of the few Arab countries to be a “major non-NATO ally.”

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The State Department issued a statement on Thursday criticizing the presence of Iranian Revolutionary Guards members at a recent defense show in Qatar, a country which the US recently designated as a “major non-NATO ally.”

Despite not mentioning the invitation extended by Doha to Iran, the State Department said it was “deeply disappointed and troubled” by the presence of Iranian military officials and IRGC officers at the Doha Defense Show in Qatar.

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“We utterly reject their presence at the show and its maritime defense exhibit, as it is Iran that is the biggest threat to maritime stability in the Gulf region,” State Department Spokesman Ned Price said. “Transactions related to Iranian weapons are generally sanctionable under multiple US authorities, including sanctions related to terrorism and weapons of mass destruction.”

Earlier this month, Qatar was designated as one of the few Arab countries to be a “major non-NATO ally” of the United States despite Doha’s close ties with Iran.

During Wednesday’s defense show, Iranian officials and IRGC members displayed their missiles and air defense weapons systems with the US exhibit in the same hall.

Read more: Under sweeping sanctions, Iran hawks its weapons in Qatar