Published: Sun, August 27, 2017
Finance | By Kristine Clayton

Qatari ambassador resumes mission in Iran after 20-month hiatus

Qatari ambassador resumes mission in Iran after 20-month hiatus

Qatar had pulled its ambassador in early 2016 after Saudi Arabia's execution of a prominent Shiite cleric sparked attacks on two Saudi diplomatic posts in Iran.

"Qatar announced that its ambassador to Tehran will return to resume his diplomatic duties", Reuters quotes the Qatari foreign ministry's information office as saying in a statement in Arabic on its website.

Sputnik Iran sat down with Hassan Hanizadeh, Iranian political analyst and expert on Middle East and Iranian-Arab relations, former editor-in-chief of the Iranian news agency Mehr News, to discuss the move, which comes amid the diplomatic standoff between Doha and the monarchies of the Persian Gulf and apparent rapprochement between Qatar and Iran.

This averages at about 15 articles a day since the UAE, Saudi, Bahrain and Egypt severed land, sea and air links with Qatar at the beginning of June due the Gulf state's alleged links to terrorism.

In June, the Gulf nations abruptly cut off their diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing the smaller nation of supporting extremism, which it denied. Shiite power Iran also has incorporated the crisis into its regular criticism of the Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia, part of the two Mideast powers' long-running proxy war.

One of those demands was that Qatar further downgrade ties with Iran. With Qatar announcing that it would reinstate its ambassador to Iran, it sent out a clear defiance message that the Gulf diplomatic crisis would not end any time soon.

Iran's Foreign Ministry did not immediately acknowledge the telephone call.

However, west African nation Senegal this week reinstated its ambassador to Qatar after recalling him out of solidarity with Saudi Arabia three months ago.

The boycotting countries later issued a list of 13 demands to Qatar, including that Doha shut its diplomatic posts in Iran. However, Qatar adamantly let the compliance deadline pass.

In recent days, however, Saudi Arabia announced that it would allow Qataris to make the annual hajj pilgrimage, which is required of all able-bodied Muslims at least once in their lives.

Qatar's top diplomat, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, spoke with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, on phone on Wednesday. Abdullah's grandfather, father and brother were rulers of Qatar until a palace coup ousted his branch of the royal family in 1972.

Like this: