Qatar: A UAE warplane violated Qatari airspace for second time

An Emirati airforce F-16 fighterjet performs at the Dubai Airshow on November 8, 2015. Dubai Airshow took off today to a slow start amid little expectations of major orders to match the multi-billion-dollar sales generated at the last edition of the biennial fair. AFP PHOTO/MARWAN NAAMANI / AFP PHOTO / MARWAN NAAMANI

Qatar has sent a complaint to the UN over the alleged incident, after a similar earlier claim against the Emirates

A second United Arab Emirates military jet has violated Qatar’s airspace, the Gulf state said on Saturday, prompting Doha to send a new complaint to the United Nations.

The plane was traveling from the UAE to Bahrain on 3 January when it flew over Qatar’s special economic zone “without prior authorisation,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

On Friday Doha said it had lodged a protest at the United Nations about a UAE fighter jet violating its airspace on 21 December, which it said was “a flagrant violation of [its] sovereignty and territorial integrity”.

In its new complaint, Qatar said “that the repetition of this terrible incident … is evidence of the UAE authorities continuing their approach to violating international law, conventions, charters and international norms”.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash on Friday denied the accusation relating to the first incident and said Abu Dhabi would send an official response.

The UAE is one of four Arab countries including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt that have imposed travel, diplomatic and trade sanctions on Qatar, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism.

Qatar has denied the charges.

Qatar turned to the World Trade Organization in August, insisting it was the victim of an “illegal siege” perpetrated by the four countries.

In November, the WTO agreed to hear Qatar’s complaint against the UAE over the five-month-old blockade, which has triggered a diplomatic crisis in the Gulf.

In the initial WTO filing, Qatar requested “consultations” with its rivals, a procedural move required by the Geneva-based organisation before a dispute settlement body panel can be set up.