Why Trump and Kushner’s push for a deal between Saudi Arabia and Qatar might fail

The blockade of Qatar began in 2017 and until recently there have been few signs of an end to the dispute between some of the world’s richest nations, writes Borzou Daragahi

Monday 07 December 2020 20:05
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<p>Deal or no deal? Jared Kushner and Qatar’s Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in Doha earlier this week</p>

Deal or no deal? Jared Kushner and Qatar’s Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in Doha earlier this week

Prodded by the outgoing administration of Donald Trump, the squabbling nations of the Arabian Peninsula appear closer than ever at putting to an end a three-and-a-half year cold war that has split the Middle East and complicated efforts to pressure Iran, fight militant extremism, and encourage trade.  

But experts say the path to healing the rift within the club of six wealthy Arab monarchies of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) remains some way off, with little sign that either side is ready to give way on the substantive issues divide them.  

In recent days, Kuwait has signalled that it has managed to make some progress in beginning a dialogue between Saudi Arabia and Qatar following visits by Mr Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and Mike Pompeo, the US secretary of state.  

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