Russian hackers ‘planted fake news in Qatar to fuel current Gulf crisis, US believes’

7 Jun

Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, the Qatari foreign minister, told CNN: “Whatever has been thrown as an accusation is all based on misinformation and we think that the entire crisis [is] based on misinformation. 

“Because it was started based on fabricated news, being wedged and being inserted in our national news agency which was hacked and proved by the FBI.”

Sheikh Saif Bin Ahmed Al-Thani, director of the government communications Office said the country was working with the FBI and Britain’s NCA.

There was no official comment from either the FBI or the NCA about the claims of the Russian hack. Moscow had not responded to the reports on Tuesday night.

Saudi Arabia’s decision to sever diplomatic ties with Qatar was a coordinated move with Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates. 

They accused the tiny Gulf state of harbouring extremist groups and suggested Qatari support for the agenda of Saudi Arabia’s regional arch-rival Iran.

The US was not informed of the decision until just before it was announced, the State Department has said.

Around 8,000 US military personnel are stationed at al Udeid in Qatar, which is used as a staging ground for US-led strikes on the Islamic State terror group in Syria and Iraq.

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