Saudi and Qatar dispute

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US pressing Saudi, UAE to end airspace ban against Qatar

The United States has been trying hard to settle a nearly three-year diplomatic quarelling between Qatar and its neighbours by forcing Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to stop their ban on Qatari airlines using their airspace, as seen by the a report.

President Donald Trump has singly begged the Saudi leadership to end the curtailment, which often force Qatari aircraft to use Iranian airspace as their only corridor out of the region, US and Gulf officials told Wall Street Journal.

The strives included calls earlier this spring with Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the officials were quoted as saying on Wednesday.

While the diplomatic quarrel has toughened the US’s Middle East strategy, the Trump administration is particularly concerned over so-called “overfly fees” that Qatar pays to Iran to use the airspace, the officials told the Journal.

“There is a greater sense of urgency to resolve the airspace issue,” said one US official. “It’s an ongoing irritation for us that money goes into Iran’s coffers due to Qatar Airways overflights.”

Saudi officials see the airspace issue as their powerful built negotiating point, and are reluctant to relent, a person with knowledge of the issue told the WSJ.


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