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Qatar foreign minister on Gulf blockade, Saudi Arabia and US sanctions

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PUTRAJAYA, MALAYSIA - DECEMBER 06: Qatar's Foreign Minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani talks to media during a joint press conference with Malaysias Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah (not seen) in Putra Jaya, Malaysia on December 06, 2018. The Emir of Qatar accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs and senior government officials, arrive in Malaysia for a three-days working visit.  (Photo by Adli Ghazali/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Anadolu Agency | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

PUTRAJAYA, MALAYSIA – DECEMBER 06: Qatar’s Foreign Minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani talks to media during a joint press conference with Malaysias Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah (not seen) in Putra Jaya, Malaysia on December 06, 2018. The Emir of Qatar accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs and senior government officials, arrive in Malaysia for a three-days working visit. (Photo by Adli Ghazali/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

“Some of the blockading countries, they want just to block this discussion,” he said. “There was some clear opposition from some of the blockading countries that they don’t want this issue to move forward and Qatar does not know what is the motive behind it.”

“We are still waiting to hear back from the Kuwaitis if there is any progress,” he added.

Relations between the oil-rich states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have been fraught since Saudi Arabia, joined by Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, imposed an economic and diplomatic blockade on Qatar in 2017. Riyadh and its allies accuse Qatar of supporting terrorism, which Doha consistently denies.

On December 3, Qatar announced its planned departure from OPEC, the 15-member cartel of oil-exporting countries whose largest producer is Saudi Arabia. Qatar and the Saudi-led bloc have frequently blamed one another for preventing a solution from being reached.

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