1. The Qatar diplomatic crisis began in June 2017 when several gulf countries abruptly cut off diplomatic relations with Qatar. These countries included Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt. The severing of relations included withdrawing ambassadors, and imposing trade and travel bans.
  2. The dispute is the worst to hit the Gulf since the formation of the Gulf Co-operation Council in 1981.
  3. The reasons for this abrupt move is Qatar’s relations with Iran, whom Saudi Arab considers a terrorist state and accused Qatar of funding terrorist organizations.
  4. Qatar has been accused of sponsoring terrorism. Some countries have accused Qatar for funding rebel groups in Syria, including Al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria, the al-Nusra Front, although the Saudis also do the same.
  5. Qatar has also hosted officials from the Afghan Taliban and Hamas. Hamas is a Palestinian Sunni-Islamic fundamentalist organization which is considered as terrorist organization by Israel.
  6. Qatar denied Saudi’s allegations on terrorism rather contends to have given support the United States in the War on Terror and the ongoing military intervention against ISIS.
  7. In 2011, during the Arab Spring, Qatar supported the Egyptian protesters agitating for change, as well as the Muslim Brotherhood, the party behind the demand for change. Saudi Arabia has been against any adventure towards democracy or public rule.
  8. This angered more to Saudi Arab as Saudi Arab and other Gulf monarchies see the Muslim Brotherhood as a threat, as it ideologically opposes hereditary rule. The government of Egypt has also long viewed the Muslim Brotherhood as enemy number one.
  9. Further, On 27 May 2017, the newly-reelected Iranian President Hassan Rouhani had a phone call with Qatar’s Emir which furthered angered Saudi Arab who considers Iran as it’s biggest enemy.
  10. On the economic front, Qatar and Iran share ownership of  North Dome Gas-Condensate field, by far the world’s largest natural gas field.
  11. In April 2017, after a 12-year freeze, Qatar lifted a self-imposed ban on developing the gas field with Iran, which could have triggered Saudi Arab’s anger towards Qatar.
  12. The crisis has the power to bring the life in Doha at halt and adversely affect it’s economic and political activities apart from keeping people at hostage and therefore efforts are made to undo the developments. This however may need Qatar to agree to some demands put from by angry countries.
  13. Saudi Arabia and its allies have issued a threatening 13-point ultimatum to Qatar as the price for lifting a two-week trade and diplomatic embargo of the country.
  14. The list of demands include stipulations that [A. Doha close the broadcaster al-Jazeera who is actually centre of the dispute, B. drastically scale back cooperation with Iran, C. remove Turkish troops from Qatar’s soil, D. end contact with groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and submit to monthly external compliance checks].
  15. Qatar has been given 10 days to comply with the demands or face unspecified consequences. It is however not clear how Qatar would respond to the one sided conditions which may be harsh on it and moreover aims to keep Qatar cut off from it’s allies which probably means, make it Saudi Puppet.
  16. The world is observing the developments with both hope and continued uncertainty which would only escalate tensions leading to disruption of Oil, migration to gulf, remittances and anti terror cooperation.
  17. For sport lovers, The Gulf crisis has the potential to disrupt preparations for the 2022 fifa world cup tournament because of the aviation restrictions and the closure of the land border with Saudi Arabia.
  18. What this all holds for India? Read now!