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Germany slams Saudi Arabia's 'provocative' demands on Qatar

28 June 2017

Yellen: No more financial crises in our lifetimes Senate GOP delays ObamaCare repeal vote past recess MORE, (R. -Tenn.), meanwhile, on Monday said he meant to block future arms sales to all Gulf states involved in the dispute until there's a "better understanding" of how the Qatar crisis will be resolved.

"All countries in the region need to do more to combat terrorism, but recent disputes among the GCC countries only serve to hurt efforts to fight ISIS and counter Iran", he wrote.

Corker's committee and its counterpart in the lower chamber, the House foreign affairs committee, have the ability to review arms deals once the executive branch officially proposes them.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE and Egypt, submitted a list of 13 demands to the government in Doha via the State of Kuwait, which is acting as a mediator.

The senator's announcement will cover any weapons packages that have not yet been formally notified to Congress, a Corker aide told HuffPost in a Monday afternoon email.

Qatar denies the allegations and says the demands are not about fighting terrorism and are instead meant to limit the country's sovereignty.

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U.S. Secretary of State Tillerson meets in Washington Tuesday with Qatari's foreign minister, three weeks after Saudi Arabia and other Arab states imposed trade and diplomatic embargoes on the oil-rich American ally. Among them are a call for Qatar to cut diplomatic ties with Iran, close its state-funded Al Jazeera broadcasting network and shut down the Turkish airbase within its borders.

Last month, a motion to halt sale of about $500m of precision-guided munitions to Saudi Arabia as part of the $110 bn arm deal signed in May in Saudi Arabia was narrowly defeated. Qatar has been given 10 days to meet the demands, but the Saudi-led group has not said what action it would take if the deadline is not met.

The paper added that Tillerson and Corker have forged a strong working relationship in the secretary's first few months on the job, and congressional and administration officials said the senator's letter was a high-profile example of how Congress could use the arms-sales notification process to influence policy.

In a Wall Street Journal interview on Sunday, Secretary Tillerson, who has called for mediated peace as the side address their grievances, addressed these demands saying "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". "Qatar is not going to stop talking to the Iranians, and we need to help the Saudis understand that", he said.

Tillerson has said he hopes the list of demands would be "reasonable and actionable".