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Mauritania re-establishes diplomatic ties with Qatar after four-year freeze

Mauritania re-established diplomatic relations with Qatar, its foreign ministry announced Sunday, almost four years after breaking them off in the midst of a Saudi-led freeze on ties with Doha.

Nouakchott had followed Riyadh and its allies in cutting ties and transport links with Qatar in June 2017, alleging it backed radical Islamist groups and was too close to Iran — claims Doha has always denied.

But in January, following a flurry of diplomatic activity by former US president Donald Trump’s administration, the boycott was lifted and Qatar was brought back into the regional fold.

“After intensive contacts over the past week and with much appreciated support from the Sultanate of Oman, the Islamic Republic of Mauritania and Qatar decided to resume diplomatic ties,” the ministry said in a statement released to the Mauritanian News Agency.

The announcement came after a meeting in Doha between the foreign minister and his Qatari counterpart, at which “the long-standing brotherly relations between the two countries” was discussed.

The two countries will reopen their respective embassies “as soon as possible,” the statement added.