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Qatar refuses to meet Gulf nations’ demands claims allegations are baseless

Qatar said on Thursday it was working with the United States and Kuwait to respond to a list of demands presented by Arab states who have accused Doha of supporting terrorism, an allegation that ignited a regional crisis between the US allies.

The feud erupted on June 5 when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt severed diplomatic and travel links with Qatar, accusing it also of courting regional foe Iran. Qatar denies the allegations.

Doha was ready to discuss “legitimate issues” with Arab states to end the crisis but some demands were impossible to meet because the underlying accusation was untrue, Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani said in a statement earlier on Thursday.

Read: Gulf crisis: Qatar slams Saudi’s refusal to negotiate demands

“We cannot ‘sever links with so-called Islamic State, al-Qaeda and Lebanese Shia terrorist group Hezbollah’ because no such links exist,” the statement said. “And we cannot ‘expel any members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard’ because there are none in Qatar.”

The four countries have sent Doha a list of 13 demands, including closing the state-funded Al Jazeera television station and reducing ties to Iran, an official of one of the four countries said. They gave Doha 10 days to comply.

The deadline is expected to expire on Sunday. Kuwait, which retained ties with Qatar, is trying to mediate in the dispute with the support of the United States.

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