Doha said on Thursday it rejects Saudi threats against Qatar over discussions on purchasing the Russian-made air defense system, considering such remarks as meddling in the Gulf island.
“we have heard about such statements in the world media, but we in Qatar reaffirm the principle of the sovereignty of states, their right to defend themselves, and to enter into legitimate deals with other countries. Thus, even if the Saudi statement is true, we completely reject it,” Qatari ambassador to Russia Fahad bin Mohammed Al-Attiyah said, speaking to Sputnik.
The world does not live in an “era of the law of the jungle based on threats,” the ambassador added.
The envoy’s remarks follow a report in Le Monde this week which said that Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz had sent letters to US and European leaders, including French President Emmanuel Macron, in which he warned about the possibility of ‘military action’ against Doha if it purchased the Russian-made air defense system.
“We have consistently cooperated with the Russian side on all issues, including defense, and Qatar strives to strengthen this sphere,” Al-Attiyah stressed.
“No one has the right to interfere in the internal affairs of Russia and Qatar; this is a sovereign right…I consider this position [by Riyadh] to be a gross violation of the internal affairs of Russia and Qatar,” he added.
Qatar’s envoy to Russia earlier confirmed that Doha was considering the purchase of Russian air defense systems, with media later specifying that the Gulf country was interested in the S-400 air defense system, presently the most advanced air defense system in Russia’s arsenal.