Gulf leaders hold summit amid months-long boycott of Qatar

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Cairo   –     Leaders of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are meeting in Kuwait on Tuesday for their first summit since the boycott of member state Qatar triggered diplomatic crisis six months ago.

Qatar announced that its leader, Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, will attend the two-day annual summit in a sign of a thaw in tensions.

Report says the level of Saudi representation is not clear yet.

In June, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt severed diplomatic, trade and transportation links with Qatar, accusing it of sponsoring terrorists, a charge Doha has denied.

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The U.S.-allied regional grouping comprises Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait and Oman.

Kuwait has been acting as a mediator to defuse the crisis between the Saudi-led quartet and Qatar, but there has been no breakthrough.

The anti-Qatar alliance has demanded that Doha downgrade ties with Iran, a regional rival of Saudi Arabia.

Qatar has rejected the demand, calling it an “infringement of its sovereignty.’’

The row is one of the most serious experienced by the GCC since it was created in 1981.

The official UAE news agency reported late on Monday that hours before the summit, the UAE announced the formation of a committee with Saudi Arabia that will boost military, political, economic and cultural cooperation.

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