Qatar: Dialogue Can Help Defuse Iran-Arab Tensions
EghtesadOnline: Qatar said Iran and Arab countries can solve their tensions through "constructive dialogue and diplomacy".
"The tension is not sectarian, as it appears to some; rather it is a power and influence struggle in the region between two different poles," the spokesperson of Qatar’s Foreign Ministry, Lolwah al-Khater, said.
Khater was responding to a question about the nature of tensions between some Arab states and Iran, on the sidelines of a panel titled "Middle East: Is Anyone Still Looking for a Solution," according to the ministry’s website.
Tensions have been high in the region since a series of suspicious explosions targeted oil tankers, including an Iranian one, earlier this year, according to Financial Tribune.
Speaking during a joint press conference with the visiting Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan in Tehran earlier this month, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said no country can create insecurity in the Persian Gulf region and simply get away with it.
"If a country thinks it can create insecurity in the region without getting a response, it is totally mistaken," he added.
Khater also stressed the importance of settling regional issues through the independent will of the regional countries, saying such a determination should represent their collective interests and must not be influenced by international players.
She added that the ability to effectively deal with problems will increase if “external interests” are not taken into consideration.
Khater's remarks came a few days after Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said relations between Doha and Tehran are based on mutual interests.
Speaking at a session held within the framework of the 2019 Global Security Forum on Oct. 15, the Qatari foreign minister said, "Iran is our neighbor and since the inception of the state of Qatar, we have not seen any violent or aggressive behavior."
Sheikh Mohammed admitted that Iran and Qatar have disagreements on many regional issues, saying, "We do not endorse some of their activities and they do not endorse some of our activities.”
“But there is an understanding that we are neighbors and we must coexist, and this relationship is based on mutual respect,” he declared.