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Gulf diplomatic crisis: French president Emmanuel Macron calls for calm and unity

Paris: French president Emmanuel Macron called for unity among Gulf states Wednesday, saying he was ready to back "all initiatives to encourage calm".

Macron spoke by phone with Qatari leader Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani and restated the "importance of preserving stability in the region". He also reaffirmed France's readiness to stay in contact with all parties involved, the president's office said in a statement.

Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates severed diplomatic ties and transport links with Qatar, accusing it of supporting extremism.

US president Donald Trump threw his weight behind the effort spearheaded by Riyadh, despite Qatar's role in hosting US military operations in the fight against Islamic State extremism.

The Gulf states "said they would take a hard line on funding... extremism, and all reference was pointing to Qatar. Perhaps this will be the beginning of the end to the horror of terrorism!" Trump said on Twitter.

Updated Date: Jun 14, 2017 16:18 PM

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