Bahrain would like to expand military cooperation with Russia and calls on Moscow to be more actively present in the Persian Gulf region, Bahrain’s Ambassador to Russia Ahmed Saati said Wednesday.
The Gulf diplomatic crisis reached a new round as the four Arab countries involved, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain, threatened Qatar with new sanctions after Doha missed the deadline to meet their demands.
On June 23, the four countries handed an ultimatum to Qatar, which contains a dozen of demands Doha must meet to settle the dispute.
The 13-point list demanded that Qatar cut its ties with Iran, close a Turkish military base on its soil and shut down Al Jazeera and its affiliates. Other demands called on Doha to publically denounce relations with Islamist groups, end suspected financing of terrorism and hand over persons designated as terrorists by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt.
In response, Doha described the demands as “unrealistic” and urged for them to be revised.
In a statement on Friday, the four countries warned that Doha’s refusal to implement the ultimatum untied their hands to take “economic, political and legal” measures they considered adequate.
“Most of our partners are Western countries. We mainly buy weapons and equipment from Western countries. But we would like to expand cooperation with the Russian Federation as well,” Saati said at the presentation of the Bahrain International Defense Exhibition and Conference (BIDEC), which will be held in the kingdom on October 16-18.
“We are calling on Russia to be more actively present in our region,” he said.