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Saudi Foreign Ministry: Qatar News Agency continues to distort facts


Saudi Arabia said it was suspending any dialogue with Qatar because Qatar News Agency continues to distort facts. The Saudi Press Agency (SPA) made the announcement an hour after reporting a phone call between leaders of the two countries in an effort to resolve the dispute between Qatar and the quartet of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. The four countries severed diplomatic relations with Qatar in June, accusing it of supporting extremist groups and of being too close to Iran. They also shut down air, maritime and land links and imposed economic sanctions on Qatar. In an earlier report Saturday, the Saudi Press Agency said Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman received a call on Friday from Qatar’s emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, who it said had expressed his desire to start a dialogue. The call came a day after US President Donald Trump said he would be willing to step in and mediate the worst dispute in decades among the US-allied Arab states and Qatar, and said he thinks a deal could come quickly. After reporting the phone call between Crown Prince Mohammed and Sheikh Tamim, another Saudi Press Agency report said that Saudi Arabia was suspending the dialogue, quoting a Saudi official at the Foreign Ministry as saying Qatar’s state news agency Qatar National Agency published a report that “did not have any relevance to truth”.

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