Gulf states are expecting the US to intervene and resolve the crisis in the region. On the other hand, US is also worried that the four month-long dispute might force Qatar to strengthen its ties with Iran.
US may give another opportunity for Kuwait to bring both the parties to the negotiating table at the GCC summit in December, after which, it might take a call on intervening.
“We will not and cannot dictate the terms of any resolution, but we are happy to be available in any way that the parties would like,” the US assistant secretary of state Tim Lenderking said this month.
He said the rhetoric surrounding the dispute, including “personal and often humiliating attacks”, made a verbal ceasefire a precondition of any talks. “At the moment there is an erosion of trust between the Gulf leaders,” he said.
The efforts of the Saudi led bloc to create internal rifts have backfired and has instead reignited the positive feeling among people, who stood firmly behind their emir.
In universities, students report an upsurge of patriotic feeling. Alanood al-Jalahma, a 21-year-old medical student, said the dispute had led to a growing interest in politics on university campuses. “People are speaking up and saying this could be done better. Change is happening,” she said.
But Jalahma said it was also leading towards a long-term rupture in the Gulf. “People are so scared that if I send a note of congratulations on social media to a friend in Bahrain, they will not reply.”
Abdulaziz al-Ansari, the chair of Qatar’s national counter-terrorism committee, was critical about the claims that Qatar was ignoring the UN-designated terrorists, the wedge issue with which the quartet has sought to sway US public opinion.
“We wake up every day with a new made-up list of alleged terrorists that the blockading countries say we are harbouring and that must throw into jail, but there is an international system for dealing with such cases,” he said.
He pointed to a new bilateral memorandum of understanding that his government had signed with the US. “The memorandum creates an agreement with the US and a model that other countries in the region could replicate. The whole world has to collaborate in the exchange of information because delay can cause disaster. We have energised all of Qatar’s relevant government agencies and to put them to work under one umbrella.”
Meanwhile, Qatari officials claim outside financing may no longer be central to much of the terrorism that afflicts Europe. “Most of the terrorists in Europe have records as criminals, drugs addicts, problems at school. They are recruited by Daesh off the internet,” he said.
The director of Qatar’s government communication office claimed Saudis were jeopardising regional security by refusing to conduct joint military exercises with the US if Qatar was involved. Sheikh Saif al-Thani said: “The US would never have established such an important military base in Qatar if it thought the country was a nest bed for terrorism.”