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Two Envoys From US To Visit Middle East In A Bid To Resolve The Crisis

Photo: The Peninsula

Two US envoys will be visiting Kuwait before starting their trip to the four states that have blocked Qatar. General Anthony Zinni, a retired former head of US Central Command, and a US diplomat are the two envoys who will be shouldering the responsibility.

The Saudi-led bloc severed ties with Qatar on June 5 after accusing it of supporting terrorism, however, Doha shrugged off all such allegations against it.

US is concerned as its allies have locked horns against each other over regional power. While, Saudi Arabia has strong counter-terrorism ties with the US, Qatar hosts the regional headquarters for US Central Command.

The crisis began shortly after Donald Trump visited the region, though he initially appeared to be on Saudi side, he quickly stepped back and played it safe.

The mixed message coming from the US in the early “stages really was helping to prolong the crisis and making it worse,” said Emily Hawthorne, Middle East and North Africa analyst at Texas-based advisory firm Stratfor. “There’s been a harmonization of the messages somewhat since then, but that’s largely because Trump hasn’t commented on it recently.”

Saudi-led bloc had issued a list of 13 demands to Qatar in order to resolve the crisis, which was rejected by Qatar and called it illogical.

“The United States is a linchpin here,” said Hawthorne. “By nature of having such deep security ties and trade ties with the countries on both sides of this conflict, the United States can’t pick sides very clearly, and so both sides feel like they have US backing.”

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