Qatar's crisis is impacting business and millions of people

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"This is the emptiest airport I have been in so far", said Katie, transiting in Qatar en route to Thailand.

Kuwait on Tuesday began mediating between Qatar and the Arab nations that cut ties to the energy-rich aviation hub, though U.S. President Donald Trump appeared to backing those isolating Qatar over allegations it supports terror groups and its relations with Iran. At a separate briefing, State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert said the USA recognises that Qatar has made some great efforts to try to stop financing of terror groups, including prosecuting suspected financiers, freezing assets, and introducing stringent controls on its banking system there.

"In our opinion recent events have the potential to destabilise these nonresident deposits and provoke an outflow", said S&P Global Ratings.

Jubeir declined to say exactly what he wanted Qatar to do immediately, but said the measures taken by Arab states, including a sea, land and air blockade would have a considerable cost on the country.

It also arranged three charter flights from Jeddah to Muscat to bring back stranded Qatar Airways passengers to Doha.

"The president offered to help the parties resolve their differences, including through a meeting at the White House if necessary", Trump's office said after the call.

Credit ratings affect what borrowers may expect to pay when they raise funds by issuing bonds to investors.

UAE-based newspaper Gulf News and pan-Arab channel Al-Arabiya reported the crackdown on expressions of sympathy with Qatar.

An outspoken Emirati ruling family member has raised the prospect of a change in leadership in Qatar, which is embroiled in a major diplomatic crisis with its Gulf neighbors.

Tensions between Qatar and Saudi Arabia - a Middle East heavyweight - bubbled to the surface two weeks ago when Qatar said its state-run news agency and its Twitter account were hacked to publish a fake story claiming the emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, had called Iran "a regional and Islamic power that can not be ignored". Jordan has downgraded its diplomatic representation and revoked the license of Doha-based TV channel Al Jazeera.

Meanwhile, Qatar's Foreign Ministry said that the country regrets the decision of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates' and Egypt to cut off diplomatic ties with it.

Qatar has said it is open to talks to end the crisis but has also accused its neighbours of impinging on its sovereignty.

A Pentagon spokesman said the crisis has had "no impact on our operations in Qatar or with regards to airspace permission around it".

Trump's tweet appeared at odds with comments from U.S. officials who had said on Monday that the United States would quietly try to calm the waters between Saudi Arabia and Qatar because Qatar is too important to USA military and diplomatic interests to be isolated.

1971 - Qatar becomes an independent nation as the British withdraw from the Gulf.

Sheikh Sabah left Tuesday night for Saudi Arabia.

The emirate has directly and indirectly supported Islamist groups across the Arab world, including the Muslim Brotherhood. Qatar has also hosted talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban.

A Qatari official, however, said the rift was pushing Doha in the direction of leaving the six-state Gulf Cooperation Council, founded in 1981, "with deep regret".

The ransom, which Iraqi officials said was in the "hundreds of millions of dollars", was believed to have been paid to militias with close ties to Tehran.

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