Qatar crisis: Fallout in the Horn of Africa?

What could be the impact of the Qatar Crisis on Sudan, Somalia, and Eritrea?
What could be the impact of the Qatar Crisis on Sudan, Somalia, and Eritrea?


A diplomatic and economic crisis broke out this week between Qatar and a group of other Arab states led by Saudi Arabia, which want Qatar to end its support for Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, among other demands. What could be the impact on Sudan, Somalia, and Eritrea – countries that have strong ties with one or more of these Mideast powers?

For now, Sudan and Somalia have announced officially neutral positions, but they may yet face pressures or be offered inducements to take sides.

In this podcast, reporter Jason Patinkin speaks with Professor Harry Verhoeven, a lecturer at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in Qatar who has written extensively on the politics and international relations of the Horn of Africa.

Somalia Breaks Silence Over the Qatar Crisis


Somalia on Wednesday broke its silence over the ongoing Qatar crisis and asked countries involved to seek dialogue.

“The Federal Republic of Somalia deeply concerned about the diplomatic row between the brotherly Arab countries” a statement from the Foreign Affairs Ministry said.

“Somalia calls to all countries involved to settle their differences through dialogue ans within the Arab League and the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation” it stated.

The statement further said that Somalia is ready to give a helping hand to resolve the Qatar crisis.
Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states last week cut ties with Qatar accusing it of funding terror activities in the region.

With more than 7 countries following afterwards to back Riyadh and UAE decision all eyes were on Somalia to know what move it will make.

Recently Somalia backed Saudi Arabia regarding Iran and Sweden but it took time before Somalia spoke on the Qatar crisis.

The Farmaajo administration is said to be enjoying a cordial relation with Doha.

Newly appointed Chief Of Staff Fahad Yassin has been said to be Farmaajo’s linkman to Doha with talk that the Gulf State may have partly funded his election campaign.

Qatar TV on Tuesday ran a story on how it had financially backed Somalia over the years in what analyst as a reminder to Farmaajo not to side with Saudi Arabia.

Somalia has for a third day in a row allowed Qatar Airways to use its airspace after banning from Gulf neighbors.

In 2016, Saudi Arabia convinced Somalia to cut ties with Iran to get $50 million in aid. Money not yet delivered


68 thoughts on “Qatar crisis: Fallout in the Horn of Africa?

  1. The weyane cliques are panicking about the imminent replacement of the Qatari peacekeeping
    forces with the strong Egyptian defense forces (Eritrean-Djiboutian border).

    1. TN Admin,

      I just read article on VOA Somali stating Eritrea supported Qatar and I see here you posted your Information Minister stating the press statement is fake. I checked here and Shabait and I cannot see any government press statement. So let me ask you what is the position of the State of Eritrea regarding the dispute between Gulf states if any announcements have been made?

      1. There are no announcements made from Eritrea and whatever you read on VOA Somalia or else is based on the usual questionable sources. Minister of Info tweeted just to debunk that false narrative from making rounds.

        Eritrean government official position will remain to stay NEUTRAL as all of the GCC states are great friends of Eritrea since the days of the armed struggle. Backstabbing is not in our culture.

          1. Republic of Somaliland just sided with Saudi Arabia(its biggest export market) and UAE(its biggest direct investor).

            While Somalia sided with Qatar(country that funded the election of Somalia’s current president).

            Eritrea alone appears to have managed to stay neutral in the region as Kenya and Ethiopia will fall into either camp shortly.

          2. I think Somaliland’s decision is based on Saudi Arabia being the Custodian of the two Holy Mosques in Islam. They were rather observant muslims on my visit there. Could be wrong though.

          3. Nothing holy about supporting zionist jewish Israel and racist Trump and Wahabi Saudia. Somaliland is idiot people see money only and against Somalia.

          4. Fake News. Read Somali foreign ministry press statement. It clearly says we are neutral and called for it be resolved diplomatically.

            Somaliland Republic….hilarious one Mr. mercenary.

          5. Mahatmes

            AL SHABAAB controls Somalia.

            I didn’t hear the AL SHABAAB Foreign Minister comment on the Gulf conflict let alone make a Newsconference/Press Statement.

            Mahatmes STOP your Fake News spreading

          6. It is not your bloody business who controls Somalia. You think your lies here will change the facts on the ground. Keep daydreaming.

        1. In addition to the Tweet from the Info Minister, the Eritrean TV also said the alleged press statement written in Arabic is fake.

        2. You did backstabbed G-15 and many others heros after they fought all their life and handed you independent Eritrea. There is No worse backstabbing than that in the whole world.

          1. I don’t think you know the meaning of “backstabbing”. You should look it up first before running your mouth here.

        3. “backstabbing is not in our blood” i love that. we are hard working people no one can make us kneel down or bribe us with their paper money.

      2. Eritrea does not have to make any statement or take sides on this crisis. Eritrea is neither a member of the GCC nor the Arab League.

        1. Yes but Eritrea close friend of both nations. Also, a neighbor. I am sure they will put pressure to gain more supporters.

          1. Knowing the mentality of the Saudi royals they will put pressure. If it will yield result is another whole question. I am sure Eritrean government is not easily swayed.

          2. Mahamed, I think the Saudis and others learned long a go not even try to sway the Eritrean gov when it comes to this sorts of things.

  2. UAE Ambassador Responds to President Trump’s Remarks on Qatar

    Washington, DC (June 9, 2017) – UAE Ambassador to the United States Yousef Al Otaiba today issued the following statement:

    “The UAE welcomes President Trump’s leadership in challenging Qatar’s troubling support for extremism. The next step is for Qatar to acknowledge these concerns and commit to reexamine its regional policies. This will provide the necessary basis for any discussions.”

    “Qatar can no longer have it both ways. Qatar’s funding and ideological sponsorship are enabling the very extremists that American, UAE and other forces are fighting on the battlefield. The President is absolutely right, stopping funding for extremism means starting with Qatar.”

  3. Interesting, with all the money and connections in the world, in just ONE WEEK Qatar independence seems close to an end. As the Saudis and their allies are working to expand current blockade, they are also putting together “terror list” that includes politicians and members of ruling family.

    Contrast all this with Eritrea. 18 YEARS ago the Woyanes and its sponsors tried the same crap… but our Eritrea withered it all. In fact, while the Woyanes are now find themselves in deep sh&t, their sponsors have gone collecting unemployment. This Qatar crisis just reminded me again why Eritrea is just special.

    1. Hahah Kaleab:
      Eritrea is Special indeed!
      It seems that Eritrea was aware of what was coming out like it did about Osama Bin Ladin.

    2. Hello All:
      Let us be constructive and do not forget Watar’s helping hand for Eritrea.
      The best solution would be to make Qatar to drop its destructive policy and rather use a constructive approach through helping needy and poor nations to build their infrastructure and to make the poverty and illiteracy a history.
      Hope Qatar will come back to its senses and its wealth for peace and development .
      Hope Eritrea will stay quite as it has already “cut” its relationship for whatever reason.

      1. So in a nutshell what we have in the Horn of Africa is as follows:

        Eritrea – neutral

        Somalia- with Qatar

        Djibouti- with Saudi/Uae
        Somaliland- with Saudi/Uae

        Ethiopia- ?
        Sudan- ?

        1. LOLLLL, Sudan and Da-booty got nothing to offer to the Saudis or Qataris. As for TPLF Ethiopia, they are waiting for Eritrea communique on this issue … and see what position to take. TPLF can’t think for its own.

          1. Exactly ethios will always wait for eritrea to pick sides then choose the opposite of it.
            or may be for the first time it will choose one side and hope eritrea wont choose it????????

        2. Somalia is neutral. Somali foreign ministry made it clear in press statement on Wednesday. You can google its website and twitter. Somaliland is a non existent entity.

          1. Mahatmes

            Somalia have one government and one government alone and that is the AL SHABAAB lead government.

            All news reports I have read clearly indicate that AL SHABAAB is the preeminent power in Somalia.

            I have heard of no press statement from
            AL SHABAAB’S (Somalia’s) Foreign Minister in regards to Gulf conflict.

          2. Mahatmes

            According to the CIA factbook Mogadishu is a city that belongs to the Hawiye Clan.

            Farmaajo is a non-Hawiye local thug who runns an Aid-crime racket in one little neighborhood of Mogadishu. I don’t understand why you insist on calling him president? At best he is a book-keeper for the more powerful Hawiye big men of the city(and I am beinf generous with my words here).

          3. Pirate Max-med

            I thought you died in one of the daily explosions in Somalia. I must have been wrong because you are still barking. Sad!

        1. Because it is supporting terrorist groups in libya,syria like al nusra terrorist group.
          and muslim brotherhood which are a poltical group that has radical islam ideolgy in Egypt while hamas are terrorist since they blow themselves like isis in israel.
          But Qatar also is a safe house for gutanmo bay released prisoners and some alshabbab linked groups

          Qatar is intervening in egypt,bahrain,libya,syria,ksa,israel, Somali

          Indeed Qatar is good with eritrea but it has two faces from one side you see its govt praise eritrea while its media make up lies daily against eritrea by aljazeera.

          So if its neutral its the best policy and pressure qatar to change its two faced policy.

  4. Eritrea should not take side in any way, in fact Qatar and UAE have been a friend of Eritrea for many years, still are and always will be. Therefore Eritrea should stay as friend with both countries, with out taking side.
    Personally I believe we should not trust the Saudis, Egypt, even Sudan. This is because first they change their mind from time to time, whom they want to be a friend with. The other reason is Saudis and Egypt always wanted relation with Eritrea only recently because of Yemen war and Egypt ( Ethiopian Dam) issues.

    1. ኣልጃዚራ ኣራቢክ ( ሽዑ ብብራዘርሁድ ትእለ ዝነበረት ) ኣብ እዋን ወራር ዎያነ ናይ ኣሜሪካ መርገጺ ወሲዳ ብየመናዊ ሪፖርተር ጌራ ኣንጻርና ትሰርሕ ኔራ ። ብድሕሪኡ ሕድሕዳዊ ርክብና ምስ ደልደለ ግን ዋላ ሓንቲ ሕማቕ ኣይሰማዕናሎምን ( ኣብ ገለ ገለ ጽሑፋት ሓደ ክልተ መስመራት ገዲፍካ ) ።

      ናይ ኣልጀዚራ ኢንግሊሽ ኣካይዳ ካብ ናይ ኣራቢክ መደብ ፍልይ ዝበለ ኮይኑ ካብ መጀመርታ ብክፍኣት ክስነ እዩ ጸኒሑ ።

      ንኣብነት ንምጥቃስ ኤርትራ ኣብ ሶማሊያ ወተሃደራት ሰዲዳ ትዋጋእ ኣላ ዝብል ዝተፈብረከ ወረ – ብኬንያዊት ጸብጻቢታ – ዝነዘሐት እዛ ንዛረበላ ዘሎና መደበር ቲቪ ( ኢንግሊሽ ) ኢያ ።

      ኣብ’ዚ ከየዛኻኸርክዎ ክሓልፍ ዘይደሊ እንተ ኣሎ እዚ እዩ ፥ ኣልጃዚራ ክንብል እንከሎና ክልተ ( ክልተ ቋንቋታ ፡ ክልተ ሜላ ፡ ንክልተ ዝተፈላለዩ ሰማዕቲ ) እምበር ሓንቲ ኣይኮነትን ። እዚ ድማ ኮነ ኢልካ ብስልቲ ዝተገብረ እዩ ።

      ተወሳኺ ፥ እቲ ዘገርም ሃከርስ ዘይናተይ ጽሑፍ ኣብ ናይ መንግስተይ ዌብ-ሳይት ኣስፊሮምለይ እንዳ በልካ ኤርትራ ንዘይኣውጸአቶ ጽሑፍ ከይ መመኻ ብጉያ ዕላዊ ይግበር ድዩ ?

  5. ኣሌክ - Alec you · Edit

    Bummer, that’s just getting downhill without brakes. Anywho.. in politics there are no permanent friends. Yes, Qatar is a friend of Eritrea, but this playing both sides game by Qatar is dangerous for Eritrea, and I know our leaders will do what’s best for Eritrea. Because, even tho Q is our friend, they didn’t even help Eritrea on the sanction, and even thru investment.. so what’s a friend when it can’t even help u in ur rainy days. Whatever Q helped Eritrea in the past, no doubt they did it because it benefits them in the HOA.

    And am not saying Eritrea should cut ties with Q.. but there is always a line. Between giving a helping hand and stupidity/getting in deep sh*t. Just saying ????????

    We just have to wait and see, but in the mean time Eritrea always stay neutra.????

    1. Alec Nebsi
      I think the quarrel of Saudi with Qatar has nothing to do with ISIS. As everyone knows ISIS is the baby of Saudi, UAE, Turky, Qatar, and Israel with the blessing of USA. ISIS was initially designed for Bashar Al Assad, however, they are now out of control. The only issue they have on Qatar is for their support of the Moslem brotherhood. Sudan also supports the moslem brotherhood,but they are not showing it, as the Saudi money is most important.

      1. ኣሌክ - Alec you · Edit

        Yep, I know.. and I hope our leaders just stay away from this Issue till the dust settles down. Cuz no doubt in the end.. this Arabs they will kiss and make out later. The loser will be.. well u get the idea.????????

        But, when it comes to the hard decisions, Eritrea comes first before friendship.????

  6. This crisis will blow over soon and it will all be forgotten. Saudi, Qatari and Emirati will be kissing each other soon at the next Arab League summit. Eritrea needs to do nothing.

    1. በዓል ሱዕዲያን ኢማራትን ኣብ ቅድሚ ቐጠር ኣቐሚጠሞ ዘለዉ መተዓራቒ ቅድመ-ኩነት ክብድ ዝበለ እዩ ዝመስል ኮይኒ ግን ከምዚ ንስኻ ዝበልካዮ እቲ ጉዳይ ነዊሕ ከይ ከደ መወዳእታ ክግበረሉ ይኽእል እዩ ። ድሮ’ኳ ፐረዚደንት ኦርዶቓን ናይ ቱርኪ – ኣፎም ይስዓር – ምስ ናይ ባሕረይን ናይ ወጻኢ ጉዳይ ክዛረቡ እንከለዉ እዚ ተፈጢሩ ዘሎ ኣሰካፊ ኩነታት ቅድሚ ምውዳእ ረመዳን ክድምደም ኣለዎ ከም ዝበሉ ይስማዕ ኣሎ ።

    2. Thanks, someone understands the Arabs. Taking side among Arab governments is like talking side in Americas domestic issues.

      Before you finalize taking sides, the Arabs will get back together doing what they are good for, creating and helping terrorist in the name of ISLAM.

      We all know ISIS are the product of Saudi kingdom, Qatar, Turkey, Israel,,, all with blessings of USA.

      The current domestic between the Arabs has to do with only with the Moslem Brotherhood, which are as good as or as terrorist as any Arab governments.

    3. “Do-Nothing” is the best option for the moment. However, if this crisis lingers for a while Eritrea may have to declare its position. Eritrea should act in the best interest of its people and nothing else. (Eritrea should not take positions that put Eritrea in a “Somalia” type of situation where the result was sanctions.) Qatar is labeled as a “Terrorist funder” by major powers and it is unwise for Eritrea to sideline with such nation or put itself against the path of powerful nations including our friends like KSA & UAE.

      What should Eritrea request from UAE & KSA as a precondition to accept their request based:
      1. Could the KSA and UAE commit to apply diplomatic pressure or mediate with U.S. to help lift sanctions on Eritrea?
      2. Could they commit to put diplomatic, economic, travel (Air space) and investment pressure on Ethiopia until it evacuates from Eritrean sovereign territories?
      3. Could UAE air force in Assab guarantee the security Eritrean air space from any enemy if requested by the host country?

      The above list may be some of appropriate requests Eritrea may raise to commit with the GCC position.

      Qatar is a friendly nation to Eritrea but its efforts have not made any significant difference in the sanctions regime. Djibouti is still acting like there is no agreement and insists on maintaining sanctions on Eritrea. Now that Djibouti has cut ties with Qatar, it may even nullify the Qatar brokered agreement. Eritrea benefited nothing from this agreement until now and
      may never will. Qatar has made a name for itself as a “peace-maker”. Eritrea did not get anything from it however, it is grateful for the effort. Qatar is friendly towards Eritrea (ignoring the Aljazeera anti-Eritrea campaign for now) but it has put its hands in the wrong places and is facing a backlash. Eritrea cannot put its neck on the line and pay a price as it did for Somalia case.

      Now look the benefits Eritrea earned by involvement with UAE & KSA. It has broken the Eritrea containment agenda and has opened doors for Eritrea to many nations. They have stationed their military base at Assab
      that scared the sh&t out of enemy and keeps an eye on Eritrean skies and may potentially take action to secure both Eritrea and its base. It has created a significant source of income for Eritrea from port use while they
      are improving and expanding new infrastructure. KSA & UAE’s relations with Eritrea is worthy of maintaining without a doubt. It has multitude of benefits for Eritrea short term and long term thus Eritrea will be wise not to compromise it at any cost. The math is even simpler – Would you want to anger one nation versus ten nations?

        1. The above statements shed light on the basis of policy making by the GOE. The challenge is how the terms like “good prospect”, “history and political tradition”, military blocs and alliances”, and “short-lived benefits and interests” are interpreted on the current crisis. This is a fluid and evolving situation thus Let’s wait and see how things develop and Eritrea position itself.

        2. ትማሊ ከም ልማደይ ገጻት ተስፋኒውስ ገንጺለ ኣብዛ ኣርእስትና ምስ ዓለብኩ እዘን ንስኻ ዘዘኻኽርካና ቃላት ፕረዚደንት ኢሳያስ ትዝ ኢለናኒ ። ስለ’ዚ ምስጋና ንትግሃትካ ።

  7. Why all the commotion in the Gulf? Because Saudi Arabia is running scared now that ISIS is defeated, the
    Sunni terrorists fighting the Syrian army losing the war and Iran is AGAIN wealthy and powerful with Iraq and
    Syria fully in its tutelage.
    But this equation won’t change even if Qatar were to break relations with Iran. Iran doesn’t really need Qatar
    now that the economic sanctions are lifted. Iran is awash with a lot of money of its own and it is trading with
    the European powers and China directly.
    Conclusion: This is much ado about nothing. A classical example of the pot (Saudi Arabia) calling the kettle
    black in desperation. And, hence, Eritrea will act like the wise brother who looks the other way when his
    brother and his wife are quarreling.

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