In Brief

Four countries break ties with Qatar

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and UAE sever diplomatic relations over Doha's alleged support of terrorism

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates have cut diplomatic ties and all land sea and air contacts with Qatar, claiming the country supports terror organisations.

Saudi state news agency SPA said officials had acted to "protect its national security from the dangers of terrorism and extremism" and had withdrawn all Qatari troops from its military operations in Yemen.

The Guardian reports that "Bahrain's foreign affairs ministry issued a statement early Monday saying it would withdraw its diplomatic mission from the Qatari capital of Doha within 48 hours and that all Qatari diplomats should leave Bahrain within the same period".

The coordinated move "dramatically escalates a simmering dispute over Qatar's support of the Muslim Brotherhood, the world's oldest Islamist movement, and adds accusations that Doha even backs the agenda of regional arch-rival Iran", CNBC says.

Tensions between the neighbouring countries have been escalating in recent weeks, reports Al Jazeera, following a cyber attack on Qatar's official news agency and the publication of a "fake news" report.

"Qatar's government categorically denied that comments in which the country's leader expressed support for Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah and Israel - while suggesting that US President Donald Trump may not last in power - were ever made," it adds.

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