Emirati diplomat to AP: 'Nothing to negotiate' with Qatar

Speaking in a rare interview, Emirati Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash told The Associated Press that Qatar has "chosen to ride the tiger of extremism and terrorism" and now needed to pay the price, despite Qatar long denying the allegation.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) central bank has instructed local banks to stop dealing with 59 individuals and 12 entities with alleged links to Qatar and to freeze all their assets, the state news agency WAM reported on Friday.

Bahrain's move against Qatar is in step with other members of the Gulf Cooperation Council, a close regional alliance that includes Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Oman, Kuwait and Qatar.

He said Qatar as an independent nation also had the right to support groups like the Muslim Brotherhood, despite its neighbors outlawing the Sunni Islamist group.

Qatar has yet to receive any list of demands from the Arab countries that have cut ties, Sheikh Mohammed said.

Qatar's foreign minister has insisted his country was combating terror financing and "protecting the world from potential terrorists".

Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, Bahrain and the Western-recognised governments of Libya and Yemen as well as the Maldives cut ties with Doha on Monday (5 June), accusing it of supporting terror groups, including the Islamic State.

The Gulf crisis has sparked fears of military escalation in an already volatile region.

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Qatar hosts the Al-Udeid military base, the largest USA airbase in the Middle East.

Russian President Vladimir Putin in a telephone conversation with Qatar's Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani reaffirmed Moscow was firmly in favor of tackling crises by political and diplomatic means through a dialogue. Meanwhile, Turkey's parliament approved sending troops to an existing Turkish base in Qatar as a sign of support.

Saudi Arabia's foreign minister flew to Oman for talks but officials did not elaborate.

"The previous emir is a big supporter of this whole extremist agenda, so we do have an issue", the official said.

"Taliban representation here is done in coordination with the Americans", he told AFP. Al-Jazeera offices also have been shut down by authorities in Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

Bahrain on Thursday followed the UAE in announcing that expressing sympathy for Qatar over the sanctions was an offence punishable by jail.

By their telling, Qatar paid off two of the most frequently blacklisted forces of the Middle East in one fell swoop: an al-Qaeda affiliate fighting in Syria and Iranian security officials.

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