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Qatar, UAE working towards strengthening relations after 3-year crisis: Doha

Qatar and the United Arab Emirates are making efforts toward strengthening their relations after a three-year-long row, Qatari Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Lolwah Khater said in an interview with Sputnik.

The official rejected reports in Arab media that despite the agreement reached earlier this year to restore diplomatic relations between Qatar and its neighbors, both Doha and Abu Dhabi are reluctant to move toward settlement. Khater cited as proof positive, a meeting between the Qatari and UAE delegations that took place in February to review thorny issues and promote the joint declaration adopted in the Saudi city of AlUla.

“The export of liquefied natural gas from Qatar to the UAE has not stopped, the air traffic between the countries has been back to normal, and these are positive factors that demonstrate both countries’ commitment to strengthening the relations,” Khater said.

In 2017, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of meddling and sponsoring terrorism. Several other countries later did the same while others downgraded their diplomatic ties with Doha and introduced a total blockade of the country.

Doha has consistently denied the accusations, insisting that the neighbors’ discontent with its economic successes was behind their hostile policies.

The impasse was overcome in January, when the Saudi-hosted 41st summit of the Gulf Cooperation Council adopted a declaration on restoring unity among the Gulf countries.