Qatar's diplomatic crisis started in the first week of June, tensions have continued to become heightened. There have always been problems in recent history but diplomatic relations in this area of the world have never been so bad. The Arab Spring uprisings had already heightened the tensions and have certainly triggered this event.

About the Crisis

The diplomatic crisis started on June 5th, 2017, when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain cut off all diplomatic relations with Qatar. This was an attempt to isolate Qatar by blocking all trade relations, imposing travel bans, and withdrawing all ambassadors.

Yemen, Libya, and the Maldives soon followed suit and cut all diplomatic ties with Qatar. Attempts by Russia and Turkey to resolve the crisis were soon shot down. The trigger for the crisis was the development in the Qatari-Irani relations as they resolved 12-year old issues. Saudi Arabia and the other Arab countries blamed Qatar for funding terrorist activity in Iran.

But there have been many more issues that have emerged over the years and have ruined Qatar's relations with the rest of the Middle East. Qatar's Al Jazeera has covered many controversial stories, taking a shot at some of the other Middle Eastern countries. Another huge debate has been Qatar's funding of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is a Sunni-dominated organization that has created problems over the past few years.

The Distribution of Power

Qatar is rich in oil and gas and shares the world's biggest natural gas field with Iran. Qatar also has the Middle East's biggest American base, Al Udeid Air Base. But, Qatar's army is significantly small, one of the smallest armies in the region, and their budget is only 3.4% of Saudi Arabia's budget.

Qatar would stand no chance against the rest of the Middle East without external help and more money. The US is more likely to aid Qatar due to their base and 10,000 soldiers deployed there, according to The Guardian.

The Jersey Ban

Qatar Airways is Qatar's major airline owned and operated by the government from their base in Doha.

It is also one of the leading airlines in the world and major sponsors for Spanish soccer teams La Liga Santander and FC Barcelona. FC Barcelona's jerseys proudly show off the Qatar Airways logo on its front. On June 10th, 2017, Saudi Arabia banned the FC Barcelona jersey in their country. Anyone found wearing the jersey could be fined $151,000 and put into prison for up to 15 years according to Sports Bible. This is a very strong message by Saudi Arabia and shows the level this crisis has reached.