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Qatar emir to attend anti-corruption summit in Rwanda, a day before key GCC meet

Tamim will attend an anti-corruption summit on Monday [Getty]

Date of publication: 9 December, 2019

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There are question marks over whether the Qatar Emir will attend a breakthrough GCC summit in Riyadh this week.
Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim Al-Thani will attend an anti-corruption summit in Rwanda on Monday, putting a question mark over whether he will attend a breakthrough GCC summit in Riyadh the following day.

Sheikh Tamim will present an international anti-corruption excellence award, which is named after the Qatari emir, in the Rwandan capital, Kigali on Monday.

The emir will also commend President Paul Kagame's efforts in fighting graft, which has made Rwanda one of the least corrupt countries in Africa.

But his presence in Rwanda, means it is yet known whether Emir Tamim will attend the breakthrough GCC summit in Riyadh on Tuesday.

Qatar has been under blockade by three GCC states - Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the UAE - since June 2017, which has put the whole Gulf union project in jeapordy.

Last week, King Salman of Saudi Arabia invited Sheikh Tamim to the GCC summit.

Kuwaiti Prime Minister Khaled Al-Sabah said on Sunday that the forthcoming GCC summit would be "an extremely important step forward to Gulf reconciliation". 

Qatar and Saudi Arabia have held talks that could signal the end of the Gulf diplomatic crisis, Qatar's foreign minister indicated on Friday.

Speaking at a foreign policy conference in Rome, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani expressed hopes for "progress" in resolving the Gulf crisis, saying Riyadh and Doha have "moved rom a stalemate".

"We have moved from a stalemate to some progress where... some talks took place between us and specifically Saudi," the Qatari foreign minister was quoted as saying by Al Jazeera at the MED 2019 conference.

"We hope that these talks will lead to our progress where we can see an end for the crisis."

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