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Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Qatar holds first meeting with newly-appointed Saudi envoy

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A senior Qatar foreign ministry official has met with the newly-appointed Saudi envoy in the capital Doha on Wednesday.

The first diplomatic meeting between Riyadh and Doha since the signing of the Al-Ula Declaration was held in the Qatari capital on Wednesday.

Qatar’s State Minister for Foreign Affairs Soltan bin Saad al-Muraikhi and Acting Charge D’affaires of the Embassy of Saudi Arabia Ali Saad Ali al-Qahtani were pictured engaged in discussions, according to a tweet posted by the state-run Qatar News Agency.

“During the meeting, bilateral cooperation relations between the two brotherly countries were reviewed, in addition to issues of common interest,” the tweet said.

While the Saudi embassy in Qatar has not yet re-opened, statements made previously by Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan suggested the embassy would open within days.

However, it has been nearly one month since that comment was made, with no official announcement to confirm progress as of yet.

“Our embassy will be reopened in Doha within days after completing necessary procedures,” the Saudi official said in January.

Despite this, progress has been made in trade relations between the two countries.

Qatar’s General Authority of Customs on Wednesday said commercial cargo between Saudi Arabia and Qatari will continue through the Abu Samra border crossing from Sunday.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt signed a reconciliation deal with Qatar on January 5 to heal a years-long crisis that fractured relations.

The four countries severed diplomatic and trade relations with Qatar in 2017, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism. Qatar has vehemently denied the accusation, saying the blockade was an attempt to infringe on its sovereignty.


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