Doha might not drop its support for the Muslim Brotherhood*, says a Kuwait-based expert. Nor will it stop its relations with Iran. But it will play a pivotal role in stabilising the region and bridging the gap between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the Islamic Republic.
It’s been almost a month since Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt decided to lift their boycott on Qatar, imposed in 2017, following allegations that the gas-rich nation sponsored extremists and harvested warm ties with Turkey and Iran who have been challenging the Gulf states.
Shortly after the announcement concerning the end of sanctions, borders reopened, flights between the nations resumed, trade began flowing, and relatives, once barred from seeing each other, could exchange visits again.
Toning Down Tensions
Dr Fahed Al-Shelaimi, chairman at Middle East Centre for Strategic and Political Studies in Kuwait, a country that played a pivotal part in brokering the deal with Qatar, says the most important achievement so far has been the end to the “war of words” and the realisation that an agreement “was indeed necessary”.
But for Saudi Arabia and the three other nations that initiated the earlier boycott these achievements are only a step towards a greater goal – combating the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) and its offshoots deemed terrorist organisations by Egypt and a number of Gulf states.