Qatar won't back down in face of pressure: minister

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"The dispute between Qatar and some Arab countries threatens the stability of the whole region", the Foreign Minister told reporters explaining that diplomacy remains Doha's preferred choice.

On Monday, five Arab countries - Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Yemen - cut ties with Qatar, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism.

The Foreign Minister stressed that the Turkish forces coming to Qatar are for the benefit of the security of the whole region, adding that Qatar does not expect any change in the mandate of the U.S. base in the country.

"We don't see a military solution as an option" to the crisis, Sheikh Mohammed said.

"We are not ready to surrender, and will never be ready to surrender, the independence of our foreign policy", Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman said.

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Far from backing down in the face of unprecedented pressure from Gulf rivals, Qatar's foreign minister said Thursday that no other country could determine its policies. Saudi Arabia earlier issued a list of demands to Qatar, including severing ties with Iran and expelling leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.

Analysts say the crisis is an extension of a pre-existing dispute which saw Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain temporarily recall their ambassadors from Doha in 2014 over Qatari support for Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood.

Sheikh Mohammed called attempts to isolate Doha "collective punishment" and a "systematic campaign" against Qatar, which he said continued to work alongside the United States against extremism. "So when the Qatari foreign minister says "listen, we need to engage in dialogue", we have done that for many years - that's just a statement for western consumption".

"40 percent of UAE power depends on the natural gas of Qatar and we will respect the LNG agreements we have signed with the UAE". The UAE's Gargash on Wednesday said, the measures against Doha were limited to diplomatic and economic ties, but warned that no one could project the "dynamics of a crisis". Qatar relies heavily on food imports, especially those coming over its only land border with Saudi Arabia.

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