Qatar opens new military office in Washington

(AhlulBayt News Agency) - The government of Qatar is opening a new military office in Washington as it works to show close security ties to the United States.

Qatar's defense ministry inaugurated the military attaché office Monday in the Georgetown neighborhood, a few blocks from Qatar embassy. Military officials from the U.S. and other countries attended as the Qatari and American national anthems were played.

Staff Brig. Gen. Yousef al-Kuwari is the Qatari defense attaché. He says six officers and one non-commissioned officer will be posted to the office, representing Qatar's army, navy, air force and special forces.

Since June, Qatar has been under a trade and diplomatic embargo imposed by Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates , who accuse Doha of supporting terrorism, an allegation strongly denied by Doha.

The Saudi-led bloc presented Qatar with a list of demands, among them downgrading ties with Iran, and gave it an ultimatum to comply with them or face the consequences. Doha, however, refused to meet the demands and said that they were meant to “bully” the nation and make it abandon its independent foreign policy.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has tried to facilitate a dialogue between Qatar and the Saudi-led quartet, but his efforts have so far been unsuccessful.



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