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Saudi-led bloc voices regret over Qatar's 'negative' response to demand list

07 July 2017

The four countries cut ties to the Federation Internationale de Football Association 2022 World Cup host early last month, over its alleged support for extremist groups and ties with Shiite power Iran.

It's not known how numerous demands, if any, Qatar has agreed to meet, but Qatar's foreign minister has previously said the list had obligations that couldn't be met and was "made to be rejected".

It was a stark departure from a stern 13-point list of demands issued by the quartet and leaked last week, in which Qatar was apparently told to shut down Al Jazeera, reduce ties with Iran and halt a Turkish military base in the country.

Speaking to reporters after reading the statement, Shoukri said Qatar's response to the bloc's conditions had "no substance".

Qatar's response to the demands has not been made public. "We find it did not provide a basis for Qatar to retreat from its policies", Shoukry said, adding that Doha's "position reflects a failure to realize the gravity of the situation".

"We hope for a positive response to be able to resolve the crisis", he said from the Saudi city of Jeddah during a press conference with his German counterpart, Sigmar Gabriel.

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir, at a joint press conference, said that further steps against Qatar will be taken at the appropriate time in line with the global law.

"Qatar should change its policy from destruction to construction", he said.

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No further decisions or steps were announced by any of the foreign ministers. Leaders of the four countries met in Cairo and saidthey will continue working to isolate Doha.

He said the demand shows "a lack of respect toward us and Qatar".

After an announcement on Wednesday by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates that their boycott of the Gulf Arab state would continue, playful Qataris shared on Twitter photoshopped images ridiculing officials from those countries.

"I know that this message will not be well received in some of our neighbouring capitals, but there are serious problems in the Middle East region, and silencing Qatar will not solve them", Sheikh Mohammed said at Chatham House in London.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi spoke with US President Donald Trump by telephone about Qatar, Sisi's office said on Wednesday.

Doha denies the charges and has submitted to mediator Kuwait replies to 13 demands that the gathering will consider. They later extended the deadline by another 48 hours at the request of Kuwait, which is trying to mediate the crisis.

Among their demands is for Qatar to end an accord under which Turkey maintains a military base in the Gulf state.

Following Qatar's defiance the four countries said they would be increasing sanctions on Qatar, which is already reeling from a land, air and sea blockade imposed on it since the crisis erupted approximately a month ago.

Saudi-led bloc voices regret over Qatar's 'negative' response to demand list