A crisis without end? Gulf states settle in for long-haul

Qatar Minister

"We have sovereign wealth funds of 250 percent of gross domestic product, we have Qatar Central Bank reserves, and we have a ministry of finance strategic reserve", the country's finance minister Ali Sharif al-Emadi told The Times, after his country rejected the list of demands.

Riyadh:Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain say they are ready to adopt more punitive measures against Qatar, following Doha's rejection of their demands to end an ongoing feud.

Funding from Saudi Arabia has primarily taken the form of endowments to mosques, the report said, which have in turn "played host to extremist preachers and the distribution of extremist literature".

Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has called for "dialogue" to resolve the current dispute between Qatar and four other Arab states and reiterated London's support for Kuwait's mediation efforts to end the rift.

He was met late on Saturday by Qatar's Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani at Al Bahr palace in Doha.

The Foreign Ministry's strong-worded communication added that joint statements by Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain after Qatar's refusal to honor the list of 13 demands are regrettable and "amount to defamation in contradiction with the established foundations of global relations".

Qatar has denied the allegations, and has characterized the bloc's ultimatums as an affront to its sovereignty. Saudi Arabia itself is known as the main sponsor of the violent Wahhabi terrorists it has accused Qatar of supporting.

Around 10 percent of the world's trade flows through the waterway, which links the Red Sea to the Mediterranean, allowing vessels to avoid sailing around Africa.

Qatar says it is establishing a committee to pursue compensation claims arising from an unprecedented blockade imposed against the Persian Gulf country by four Arab countries, dubbed as the siege states, led by Saudi Arabia.

Doha's National Human Rights Committee in June said the sanctions represented a violation of the rights of some 140 Qatari pupils studying in the UAE, Saudi and Bahrain.

"The Qatari response lacks responsibility and objectivity and undermined Kuwaiti mediation efforts before they even took off".