Qatar has accused Saudi Arabia of trying to engineer “regime change” during its four-month blockade of its Gulf neighbor.
Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani told CNBC on Tuesday that Riyadh is attempting to destabilize Qatar’s leadership.
“We see [Saudi] government officials talking about regime change… We see a country that is bringing back the dark ages of tribes and putting them together in order to create a pressure on connected tribes in Qatar,” he said.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt severed diplomatic and trade links with Qatar on June 5, accusing Doha of supporting “extremism and terrorism” and “collaborating with Iran.”
Qatar has vehemently denied all allegations.
Sheikh Mohammed said the plan of the blockading countries was not to thwart terrorism but to “disrespect and bully”.
“It is nothing to do with stopping financing terrorism or hate speech while they are doing the same by promoting incitement against my country, promoting a regime change in my country,” he told the US broadcaster.
Sheikh Mohammed said meanwhile, that the blockade has impeded the fight against Takfiri ISIL group in the region.
“So there are a lot of things which undermine … the global efforts in countering … Daesh,” Sheikh Mohammed said, referring to ISIL by an Arabic acronym.