Author AFP

Around The Region
Saudi-led bloc to continue Qatar boycott after ‘negative’ response to demands

Foreign ministers of the Saudi-led bloc that imposed an embargo on Qatar said Wednesday they regretted Qatar’s “negative” response to a list of demands to end a diplomatic crisis. The ministers of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates “regret the negative response from Qatar,” they said, in a statement read out by Egyptian foreign minister Sameh Shoukry, after meeting in Cairo. Speaking to reporters after reading the statement, Shoukry said Qatar’s response to the bloc’s conditions had “no substance”. Qatar calls for dialogue Meanwhile, Qatar’s foreign minister called for “dialogue” to resolve the Gulf diplomatic crisis, accusing Arab states that have cut ties with Qatar of trying to undermine the nation’s sovereignty. H E Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani was speaking at the Chatham House think tank in London. “As the 48 hours extension is coming to an end, Qatar continues to call for dialogue despite the…

Qatar
Qatar receives cargo planes full of food from Iran

Iran has sent five planes of food to Qatar, Iran’s national carrier told AFP on Sunday, days after Gulf countries cut off air and other transport links to the country. “So far five planes carrying perishable food items such as fruit and vegetables have been sent to Qatar, each carrying around 90 tonnes of cargo, while another plane will be sent today,” Iran Air spokesman Shahrokh Noushabadi said. “We will continue deliveries as long as there is demand” from Qatar, Noushabadi added, without mentioning if these deliveries were exports or aid. Three ships loaded with 350 tonnes of food were also set to leave an Iranian port for Qatar, the Tasnim news agency quoted a local official as saying. The port of Dayyer is Iran’s closest port to Qatar. In the biggest diplomatic crisis in the region in years, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, plus Egypt and…

UAE
Sheikh Mohammed orders three men to clean Dubai zoo over cat killing video

The ruler of Dubai on Wednesday ordered three men accused of feeding a cat alive to two dogs and filming it to clean the city’s zoo for three months.  Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum ordered “those detained for torturing the cat to perform community service by cleaning the Dubai zoo for four hours a day for three months,” a government statement said.  It is not clear if the men will also face prosecution. A recently enacted law on animal cruelty stipulates punishment of up to a year in prison or a fine of up to 200,000 dirhams.  Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum ordered the men who tortured the cat to perform community service by cleaning the Dubai zoo for four hours a day for three months, a government statement said. Emirati newspapers said a Gulf citizen and two Asians had been arrested over the video, which was widely shared on…

Around The World
Passengers hurt in Qatar Airways plane emergency landing

A Qatar Airways jet made an an emergency landing at a Portuguese military base in the Azores islands Sunday after heavy turbulence injured passengers. The Boeing 777, bound from Washington to Doha, was re-routed during a storm to the Azores, a Portuguese territory in the North Atlantic, and landed at the Lajes Air Base. #QR708 not continuing to Doha after horrific turbulence forces plane to land on Potuguese island. pic.twitter.com/kESPKaz98a — Azad Essa (@azadessa) December 4, 2016 Officials and witnesses said the plane had dropped steeply in altitude, hurling several passengers out of their seats and causing one traveller to suffer heart trouble. when plane dropped, three year old Lebanese boy flew out his seat, and landed across aisle into the lap of an Indian man who held him #QR708 — Azad Essa (@azadessa) December 4, 2016 “All the passengers were taken to a hotel in the evening and are…