Kuwait calls on Qatar to exercise 'self-restraint'

Kuwait's ruler aims to ease tensions between Qatar and other regional nations.

Elad Benari ,

Emir of Kuwait Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah
Emir of Kuwait Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah

Kuwait's ruler on Monday called on Qatar to exercise self-restraint in its dispute with Saudi Arabia and other regional nations, reported The Associated Press.

The call from Kuwaiti Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah came hours after Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates all cut diplomatic ties with Qatar and shut down land, sea and air links.

Those countries accuse Qatar of supporting terror groups in the region, a charge denied by Qatar.

The state-run Kuwait News Agency said Al-Sabah spoke with Qatar's emir Monday evening and urged him to give a chance to efforts that could ease tensions.

Kuwait appears to be trying to play a mediating role between Qatar and Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, noted AP. Qatar's ruler, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, visited Sheikh Sabah last week, the report said.

The spat between Qatar and the other Arab countries began late last month, when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt all blocked the website of the Qatari-owned Al-Jazeera television network.

That move followed comments attributed to Al Thani, in which he allegedly described Iran as an "Islamic power" and criticized U.S. President Donald Trump's policy towards Tehran.

Qatar claimed that its Emir had not made the comments attributed to him, saying the website of its official news agency was hacked.