Riyadh: Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates announced on Monday they were severing diplomatic ties with Qatar, as they accused the Gulf state of supporting terrorism.
Soon after the announcement, Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways on Monday said it would suspend flights to Qatar after the United Arab Emirates was among major Gulf states to sever ties with Doha in an unprecedented regional diplomatic crisis.
Etihad said flights will stop on Tuesday, after the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain said they would cut all air, land and sea links with Qatar within 24 hours.
#BREAKING UAE's Etihad announces suspending flights to Qatar
— AFP news agency (@AFP) June 5, 2017
Saudi news agency SPA said Riyadh cut diplomatic ties and closed borders with its neighbour to "protect its national security from the dangers of terrorism and extremism".
A Saudi official cited by SPA said the country decided to "sever diplomatic and consular ties with Qatar, and to close all land, sea and aviation ports".
The "decisive" measure was due to the "gross violations committed by authorities in Qatar over the past years", the Saudi statement said, as the UAE made an announcement cutting ties.
Egypt's foreign ministry also accused Doha of supporting "terrorism" in a statement as it announced the severing of ties.
The statement said all Egyptian ports and airports would be closed to Qatari vessels.
Bahrain news agency said the tiny kingdom was cutting ties with Doha over its insistence on "shaking the security and stability of Bahrain and meddling in its affairs".
The Saudi-led Arab coalition in Yemen's two-year war also said it had expelled Qatar.
Published Date: Jun 05, 2017 11:14 am | Updated Date: Jun 05, 2017 11:44 am