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Qatar files UN complaints as 'UAE jets breach airspace'

Qatar alerts the UN secretary-general to a second infringement of its airspace by the UAE as GCC crisis continues.

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Qatar has filed a new complaint with the United Nations, reporting a second violation of its airspace by a United Arab Emirates (UAE) jet in recent weeks.

The "military airlift", which was travelling from the UAE to Bahrain, entered the airspace of Qatar on the morning of January 3 "without prior authorisation", Qatar's foreign ministry said in a statement on Friday.

Sheikha Alia Ahmed bin Saif Al Thani, Qatar's UN representative, submitted a letter of complaint to Antonio Guterres, the organisation's secretary-general, in light of UAE's repeated infringement upon Qatar's sovereignty, the statement noted.

"[The] threat to the safety of its [Qatar's] borders and territories is evidence of the UAE authorities continuing their approach to violating international law, conventions, charters and international norms," it added.

The move follows Sheikha Alia Ahmed's sending of a separate letter to Guterres on Thursday in relation to a prior violation of Qatar's airspace by the UAE on December 21 of last year.

The breach, which lasted for one minute, occurred at a height of 33,000 feet above Qatar's exclusive economic zone.

That letter stated that the violation was in breach of international law, and took place in the context of "irresponsible and provocative" actions by the UAE against Qatar.

Qatar's UN envoy said Doha would take all necessary measures required to defend its borders, airspace and national security in order to preserve its legitimate sovereign right in accordance with international laws if such violations were repeated.

The developments have come amid a blockade against Qatar by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain, which has been in place since June 2017.

The group severed all diplomatic and trade ties with Qatar, accusing Doha of supporting "terrorism".

Qatar has strongly denied the accusations, and is seeking international arbitration in an attempt to end the blockade.

Lulwah Al Khater, spokesperson for Qatar's foreign ministry, announced Doha's pursuit of independent mediation on January 10, days after a UN investigation said the blockade was negatively impacting the people of the region.


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