US urges Qatar and Saudi-led group to 'lower rhetoric'

The Arab states are demanding, among other things, that Doha close Al Jazeera television, curb ties with Iran, shut a Turkish base and also pay reparations.

"Tehran stands with the Qatari nation and government.Pressure, threats, or sanctions are not the right way to resolve differences", Rohani said.

They are also demanding that Qatar hand over all individuals who are wanted by those four countries for terrorism; stop funding any extremist entities that are designated as terrorist groups by the USA; and provide detailed information about opposition figures that Qatar has funded, ostensibly in Saudi Arabia and the other nations.

Stop all funding for individuals, groups or organizations designated as terrorists by Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, U.A.E., the United States and other countries.

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"While some of the elements will be very hard for Qatar to meet, there are significant areas which provide a basis for ongoing dialogue leading to resolution".

Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani to meet Rex Tillerson after United States questions cause of blockade against Qatar.

Riyadh, along with the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt, cut ties with Qatar over allegations that it funds terrorism - an accusation Doha rejects but that President Donald Trump has echoed. Qatar has the highest per capita income in the world and can ride out the blockade with help from Iran and Turkey.

"To ask Turkey to pull out its troops from Qatar is firstly disrespectful behaviour towards us", he said in Istanbul, according to Reuters.

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On Sunday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed his "unconditional support" for Qatar and denounced the Gulf States' demands as running "contrary to worldwide law".

The diplomatic tiff, which some observers believe President Donald Trump might have encouraged through his full-throated support for Saudi Arabia during a recent visit, could threaten the future of a huge U.S. air base in Qatar.

Echoing similar views, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said the ongoing isolation of Qatar was "unacceptable" and he reiterated the country's support to Qatar.

Hurriyet newspaper said last week a joint exercise by Turkish and Qatari forces was expected following the Islamic Eid al-Fitr holiday which started on Sunday, and the number of Turkish soldiers sent to the Gulf state could eventually reach 1,000. The conflict between the Arab countries and Qatar should be settled by diplomatic means on the basis of balance of interests, a high-ranking source at the Russian Foreign Ministry told TASS on Saturday.

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