Qatari officials today announced that they have contracted a legal team to explore possible lawsuits against the four countries blockading them, seeking damages for any losses incurred as a result of the ongoing blockade.
Economy Minister Ahmed bin Jassim al-Thani is visiting Geneva today, meeting with various international trade organizations based there, to see if lawsuits through their various courts might be the appropriate venue for redress.
Qatari Defense Minister Khalif bin Mohammed al-Attiyah suggested that if those trade courts don’t pan out, the nation might ultimately take the matter to the International Court of Justice at The Hague.
It’s unclear how big the damages might be for the blockade, which halted Qatar’s traditionally heavy trade with the Saudis. The Qatari Stock Exchange has sustained considerable losses related to concerns about the blockade, though growing trade ties between Qatar and Turkey have meant shortages feared at the start never materialized.
Such a lawsuit could prove hugely embarrassing for the blockading countries, particularly the United Arab Emirates, who US intelligence officials have claimed was initially behind a hacking attack on Qatar’s state media, which precipitated the diplomatic crisis and blockade.
With Qatar having weathered the initial storm of the blockade, reports of the UAE being behind the plot may put the blockading countries at a marked disadvante into the future, particularly if a high-profile lawsuit was launched.
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