Qatar begins shipping cargo through Oman to bypass Gulf rift

Amnesty International has said that the Gulf states opposed to Qatar were "toying" with people.

Qatar's neighbors cut ties with the country over accusations that it sponsors Islamic extremism, which Qatar denies.

The crisis has raised major concerns of instability in the region, and on Sunday Kuwait's foreign minister said his country would continue its mediation efforts.

He also said "no one has the right" to pressure Qatar to silence TV network Al Jazeera, which is based in Doha.

"The Qataris are willing to hold dialogue to bring upon a solution to the matter and bolster peace and security in the region", the Kuwaiti foreign minister said in a statement.

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is visiting Saudi Arabia to discuss with its leadership the rift in the Gulf after several Arab and Islamic countries cut diplomatic ties with Qatar over its alleged support for extremist groups.

Oman is a member of the Gulf Cooperation Council but takes a relatively independent diplomatic approach to the other five states in the bloc, particularly towards Iran.

Both Saudi and Qatari officials appear to be seeking support from Ethiopia.

According to Iran's Press TV a recent visit by U.S President Donald Trump to Riyadh, where he called on Arab countries to "isolate" governments supporting "terrorism" as well as Iran, is believed to have emboldened the Saudi rulers to pursue their policies more aggressively, including by assailing Qatar. Anwar Mohammed Gargash, UAE minister of state for foreign affairs, tweeted.

The official said that the traffic of cargo vessels between the Iranian and Qatari ports faces no problems, and negotiations are underway between Tehran and Doha to dispatch goods to Qatar.

"We are ready to load and send the materials and goods needed by the Qataris from the ports in southern Iran", Eslami said, adding that a consignment of commodities has already been sent from Iran's Bushehr port to Qatar at the demand of Doha. Doha is a major global travel hub, but flagship carrier Qatar Airways now flies increasingly over Iran and Turkey after being blocked elsewhere in the Middle East.

"I am also concerned by some of the strong actions which Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Bahrain have taken against an important partner, and urge them to ease the blockade on Qatar".

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