File Photo: Embassy of Greece in Qatar's capital Doha (Photo Courtesy of Embassy of Greece in Qatar's official website)
The Greek embassy in Doha will take on the diplomatic representation of Egypt in Qatar following Cairo’s decision to sever diplomatic ties with the Gulf state in the early hours of Monday, the Egyptian foreign ministry has announced.
In a statement late on Monday, the ministry said that Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri spoke to his Greek counterpart Nikos Kutzias, asking Greece to act as the representative of Egypt in Qatar and to attend to the interests of Egyptian nationals residing in Qatar, as the Egyptian embassy will be closed.
“Within the framework of the traditionally friendly relations Greece maintains with the Arab world, Mr. Kotzias responded positively to his Egyptian counterpart's request,” the Greek ministry for foreign affairs said, also late on Monday.
There are around 300,000 Egyptians residing in Qatar, according to official estimates.
Cairo also has announced that it will ban flights to and from Qatar starting Tuesday at 6am Cairo local time (4am GMT), and that it will close off Egyptian airspace to Qatari aircraft.
Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Yemen and the eastern-based government of Libya have cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, claiming that Doha supports terrorist organisations such as Daesh and Al-Qaeda, as well as interfering in the internal affairs of nations in the region.