The chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee has called for Gulf countries to work together to contain what he describes as the “threat posed by Iran”.
“The United States and its Gulf partners share economic opportunities, anti-terrorism concerns and can be working together to counter the threat posed by Iran,” Engel said on Wednesday.
“For this to happen, a unified Gulf is essential, but so far we have not seen, unfortunately, enough progress to end the Qatar blockade,” he said.
World reacts to Iran’s decision to abandon parts of nuclear deal
The quartet has accused Qatar of supporting “terrorism”. Qatar has denied the charges and said the boycott aims to impinge on its sovereignty.
Engel also urged the blockading countries to lift sanctions imposed against Qatar.
“It is in all parties’ interest to end the blockade so that we can work together to counter the real threats in the region,” he said.
“At the very least, the Gulf countries should allow Qatar overflight rights.”
On Wednesday, he sanctioned Iran’s steel, aluminium, copper and iron sectors, which provide crucial foreign currency earnings for its crippled economy, and threatened further action.
Trump’s move came after Tehran earlier said it was quitting parts of the 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers, which Washington abandoned in 2018 and ignited the current crisis.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he hopes the nuclear deal can be saved after Iran’s announcement.
European countries who are signatories to the deal expressed concern over the latest developments threatening the agreement.
Across Europe, there was concern over the latest developments threatening the nuclear deal. Russia and China, also signatories, have blamed US sanctions for Tehran’s announcement.