Qatari ambassador resumes mission in Iran after 20-month hiatus

Libyan General Haftar following a meeting with the Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov in Russia November 2016

ISNA reported that Ambassador Ali Hamad Alsulaiti arrived in Tehran on Friday and began working Saturday morning.

Qatar had withdrawn its ambassador early past year in a show of solidarity with Saudi Arabia, after two Saudi diplomatic posts in Iran were attacked during protests against the kingdom's execution of a prominent Shiite cleric.

He said Qatar's decision to restore full diplomatic relations with Iran was accompanied by a "confused justification".

It's been nearly three months since Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt cut economic and diplomatic ties with Qatar.

Doha has been receiving fresh food supplies from the Iran, which has also allowed Qatar's national carrier to use its airspace. Qatar pulled its ambassador in early 2016 after Saudi Arabia's execution of a prominent Shiite cleric sparked attacks on two Saudi diplomatic posts in Iran.

The ministry called on Qatar to "cease all action which could affect its security" as well as that of countries in the region in order to "safeguard the peace and stability".

To stop boycotting Qatar, the Arab countries issued 13 demands including curbing relations with Iran.

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In announcing its decision, Qatar did not mention the diplomatic crisis roiling Gulf Arab nations since June, when Qatar found its land, sea and air routes cut off by its neighbors over Doha's policies across the Mideast.

The retaliatory move came just 24 hours after the central African state announced it was closing Qatar's embassy in N'Djamena.

In Washington, State Department spokesman Heather Nauert told reporters Thursday that the USA remains "very deeply concerned with the status of the dispute" between Qatar and the Arab quartet. Qatar long has denied funding extremists. Chad's diplomatic mission in Doha will be closed and all the personnel will be recalled. Qatar ignored the demands and let a deadline to comply pass, creating an apparent stalemate in the crisis.

The ministry also announced that Qatar's Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani held a telephone conversation with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif.

Mediation attempts led by countries such as Kuwait and the United States have so far failed to make headway toward settling the crisis.

"Given that a formal escalation in terms of sanctions is probably off the table for now, we're seeing this informal pressure on Qatar.to try and perhaps stir the pot", the professor said.

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