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Mauritania admits Qatar boycott 'a mistake' amid resumption of ties Open in fullscreen

The New Arab Staff

Mauritania admits Qatar boycott 'a mistake' amid resumption of ties

Mauritania has restored ties with Qatar [Getty]

Date of publication: 25 March, 2021

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Spokesperson for the Mauritanian government, Sidi Ould Salem, said Nouakchott should never have cut ties with Qatar.

Mauritania expressed regret at breaking diplomatic relations with Qatar, just days after the two countries resumed ties for the first time since 2017.

Spokesperson for the Mauritanian government, Sidi Ould Salem, on Wednesday evening expressed happiness that ties with Qatar are finally restored, saying the diplomatic rift "should not have happened to begin with".

"By grace, the Arab house is healed again," he added.

On Sunday, Mauritania announced that it had re-established diplomatic relations with Qatar.

Nouakchott had followed Riyadh and its allies in cutting relations and transport links with Qatar in June 2017, alleging it backed radical Islamist groups and was too close to Iran - claims Doha has always denied.

But in January, following a flurry of diplomatic activity by former US President Donald Trump's administration, the boycott was lifted and Qatar was brought back into the regional fold.

"After intensive contacts over the past week and with much appreciated support from the Sultanate of Oman, the Islamic Republic of Mauritania and Qatar decided to resume diplomatic ties," the ministry said in a statement released to the Mauritanian News Agency.

The announcement came after a meeting in Doha between the foreign minister and his Qatari counterpart, at which "the long-standing brotherly relations between the two countries" was discussed.

The two countries will reopen their respective embassies "as soon as possible", the statement added.

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