Photographer: Jasper Juinen/Bloomberg

U.A.E. Media Jump on Qatar Over Report It Plans to Bolt GCC

Chatter that Qatar wants to quit the Gulf Cooperation Council for not backing it against a Saudi-led embargo has unleashed a torrent of vitriol.

Newspapers in the United Arab Emirates, one of the boycotting nations, jumped on a report in Iran’s Jaam-e-Jam daily that cited a former Iranian ambassador to Qatar as saying the emir is fed up with the GCC. In pages upon pages of copy on Wednesday, they accused the gas-rich emirate of plotting to serve Iran by destroying the six-nation bloc from within.

“Qatar’s treason’’ and “Qatar commits suicide,’’ the newspapers screamed. “Doha’s rulers are a source of danger to the security and stability of Gulf countries,” Abu Dhabi’s state-owned Alittihad proclaimed, while warning in a different article of a “Qatari-Iranian conspiracy to destroy the GCC.’’

Al Khaleej, a Sharjah-based newspaper, quoted a commentator describing Qatar’s ruling regime as “malignant cancer’’ that must be removed before it spreads.

Since June 5, the emirate has been boycotted by Saudi Arabia, U.A.E., Bahrain and Egypt, which accuse it of supporting terrorist elements, a charge it denies. They also resent its coziness with Iran.

Qatari officials have never publicly indicated any intention to leave the bloc, and officials have repeatedly invoked mediation as the way to resolve the conflict within the GCC. An editorial Tuesday in Qatar’s privately owned Al Arab newspaper echoed the sentiment of many in Qatar who are angry at the GCC for not supporting them against the Saudi-led bloc’s actions.

Leaving the council “has become a popular demand because Qatar will stick to its position that rejects guardianship,” the editorial said.

— With assistance by Mohammed Sergie

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