UAE Ambassador to the United States Yousef Al Otaiba said that the United States should remove its airbase from Qatar as it acts as an insurance against action being taken against Doha amid ongoing diplomatic crisis.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The United States should remove its airbase from Qatar as it acts as an insurance against action being taken against Doha amid ongoing diplomatic crisis, United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) Ambassador to the United States Yousef Al Otaiba said.
On June 5, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the UAE cut diplomatic ties with Qatar citing Doha’s alleged support of terrorism. Several other countries, including Chad and Senegal, recalled their ambassadors from Doha, while Jordan and Djibouti said they would lower the level of diplomatic contacts with Qatar.
“The air base is a very nice insurance policy against any additional pressure. Maybe someone in Congress should have a hearing and just say, you know, ’Should we consider moving it?’” Al Otaiba said on Tuesday as quoted by The Hill newspaper.
The ambassador stressed that the reason why no action against Doha had been taken was “because of the airbase.”
On June 5, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said in a joint press conference with Defense Secretary James Mattis that the United States was urging the Gulf Cooperation Countries (GCC) and Qatar to resolve their issues and remain united.
Meanwhile, Qatar has denied the accusations and said that no retaliatory measures would be taken.
The Al Udeid US Central Command (CENTCOM) military base in Qatar, the largest in the Middle East, is home to 10,000 US servicemen and serves as a major communications and operational center for Washington in the region.