Saudi Arabia, other Gulf countries expected to end rift with Qatar

Arab World Materials 5 January 2021 07:31 (UTC +04:00)
Saudi Arabia, other Gulf countries expected to end rift with Qatar

Kuwait's Foreign Ministry on Monday announced that Saudi Arabia will lift a yearslong embargo on Qatar, opening its air and land borders in the first steps toward ending the Gulf crisis, Trend reports citing Daily Sabah.

The state-run Kuwait News Agency reported the announcement, saying that Saudi Arabia would open its airspace, land and sea borders starting Monday evening.

Kuwait has been mediating between Qatar and four Arab states that launched an embargo in mid-2017.

The announcement comes on the eve of a summit of Gulf Arab leaders in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday that will be chaired by Saudi King Salman.

Meanwhile, Qatar said later that its ruler would attend the summit.

"The Emir of the country is heading the delegation of the State of Qatar to participate in the meeting of the... Gulf Cooperation Council" that starts on Tuesday, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani's office said in a statement.

The decision by the close U.S. allies comes in the final days of the Trump administration's time in office and just ahead of the incoming President-elect Joe Biden.

"We've had a breakthrough in the Gulf Cooperation Council rift," A senior Trump administration official who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity.