- Kuwait, US and UK leading efforts to end the Qatar standoff
- Saudi-led bloc broke diplomatic and transport links with Qatar on June 5
- Qatar's ruler said it was ready to engage in dialogue to end crisis
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt have yet to respond to proposals by the U.S. and the U.K. that aimed to start direct negotiations, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. While mediation efforts are continuing, there are no fresh ideas at the moment on how to break the impasse, he said.
The four-nation bloc said over the weekend that Qatar was falling short in its efforts to counter terrorism, rebuffing an appeal by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and U.K. Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson to ease the boycott. The alliance added nine organizations based in Yemen and Libya as well as nine people from Qatar, Kuwait, Yemen and Libya to the list of alleged terrorist groups it accuses the Gulf nation of supporting.
Qatar's benchmark stock index dropped 0.5 percent, the most in the Middle East, at 11:19 a.m.
Kuwait, the U.S. and the U.K. are leading efforts to end the standoff, which broke out on June 5 when the Saudi-led alliance severed its diplomatic and transport links with Qatar, accusing it of supporting extremist groups. Qatar denies the charge and says the move was an attempt by Saudi Arabia to impose its will on smaller nations in the Gulf.
Britain later joined his call, with Johnson on Sunday welcoming Qatar's "commitment to combat terrorism" and expressing hope for the start of "substantive discussions on remaining differences."
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