The Newest: Trump welcomes emir of Qatar to White Home
11 April, 2018, 17:37 | Author: Angel Logan
President Donald Trump is internet hosting the ruling emir of Qatar, the tiny gas-rich nation he as soon as accused of funding terrorism. "We've been cooperating with the United States of America to stop funding terrorism around the region".
The emir did not accept the characterization that his country had just become an ally in the fight on terrorism.
Saudi and Emirati officials have accused Thani's government of cosying up to Iran and funding militant groups.
Qatar has denied any wrongdoing and has taken steps to address the USA concerns, including allowing Treasury Department officials into its central bank to improve accountability for controls to prevent terror funding.
Shortly after the crisis began, Trump appeared to take responsibility for the sanctions against Qatar.
A year ago, Trump joined Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in adopting a hard line against Qatar, maintaining the country needed to weaken relations with Iran and stop funding terrorism. The administration is looking to organise a summit for Gulf leaders to end the impasse.
According to a statement of Pentagon spokesperson Dana White, Mattis and Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani discussed mutual security interests, including the campaign to defeat the Islamic State (IS).
"He's been very helpful, he's been supporting us during this blockade and I would also like to thank the American people for being very supportive".
Trump has spoken recently to the leaders of most of the countries involved in the dispute, and has pushed all five nations to resolve it, the State Department said.
Richard Goldberg, a former senior congressional official and current adviser to the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told the Free Beacon that Trump must have a frank conversation with the Qatari emir or risk further inflaming regional tensions.
The package of missiles planned to be sold to Qatar contains about 5,000 Advance Precision Kill Weapon Systems (APKWS), including 5,000 high explosive warheads.
"... Waxaan rabaa inaan u mahadnaqo Madaxweyne Trump si shaqsiyan isugu mashquuliyey xalinta khilaafka dalalka GCC (Khaliijka), wuxuuna sidoo kale gacan nasiiyey xiligii xayiraada nala saaray, waxaana sidoo kale u mahadnaqayaa shacabka Maraykanka taageerada ay nasiiyeen..." ayuu yiri Amiirka Qatar oo la hadlayey warbaahinta xiligii uu la kulmayey Trump.
Trump went on to note Qatar's purchases of U.S. weaponry, saying they buy "a lot of equipment from us, a lot of military airplanes, missiles".
Trump had initially advocated for an economic blockade on Qatar, but aides eventually convinced him to take a more moderate approach given the strategic importance of the Al Udeid Air Base outside Doha in U.S. Middle East operations. The country hosts some 10,000 US troops at al-Udeid Air Base, a key command center for USA forces in the Middle East, and has been building new facilities for US troops there at Qatari expense in a bid to make it more comfortable for the Americans.
Trump is scheduled to meet Sheikh Tamim at the White House.
Information for this article was contributed by Ken Thomas of The Associated Press.
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