Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates all announced they would withdraw their diplomatic staff from Qatar, a gas-rich nation that will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Saudi Arabia said Qatari troops would be pulled from its ongoing war in Yemen.
Saudi Arabia broke diplomatic relations and all land sea and air contacts with fellow Gulf Arab state Qatar on Monday, saying the move was necessary to protect the kingdom from what it described as terrorism and extremism.
The decision comes after Qatar alleged in late May that hackers took over the site of its state-run news agency and published what it called fake comments from its ruling Emir about Iran and Israel. Its Gulf Arab neighbours responded with anger and blocked Qatari-based media, including the Doha-based satellite news network Al-Jazeera.