Blocked Qatari websites open up momentarily after technical glitch; Saudi Arabia says blockade to be reimposed soon

Riyadh: Websites and some television channels linked to Qatar were unblocked in Saudi Arabia on Monday morning but the change was a result of a technical glitch, and the restrictions will be reimposed shortly, a key Saudi royal court adviser said.

File image of King of Saudi Arabia Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. AP

File image of King of Saudi Arabia Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. AP

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut ties with Qatar and imposed an economic boycott on 5 June, accusing it of financing extremist groups and supporting terrorism. Doha has repeatedly denied these accusations.

As part of the boycott, Saudi and Emirati authorities blocked the Qatari state-funded television network Al Jazeera and spin-off channels of beIN Sports.

But on Monday morning, Saudi viewers reported that beIN sports channels and websites were back operating, while Al Jazeera satellite channels remained blocked.

"The lifting of the block on websites of the Qatari authorities was due to a technical error and will be fixed within the coming hours," Saud al-Qahtani, a top adviser to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, said on his Twitter account.

UAE telecommunications providers du and Etisalat reinstated BeIN Sports channels on Saturday, saying in text messages to subscribers that the package would be subject to ongoing review, the UAE newspaper The National reported.

As of late Monday morning, Al Jazeera remained blocked in both countries, along with the websites for Qatar Airways and Doha News.


Updated Date: Jul 24, 2017 17:55 PM

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