Qatar seizes Bahraini boat and arrests its crew

Bahrain's Coast Guard Command announced that Qatari officials stopped and detained a Bahraini boat for violating Doha's territorial waters.

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Bahrain’s Coast Guard Command announced in a statement that Qatari officials stopped and detained a Bahraini boat for violating Doha’s territorial waters.

According to Bahraini media, the Qatari Coastline Security General Directorate issued a fax to the Coast Guard’s Naval Operations Centre informing them of the seizure of a Bahraini boat that had entered Qatari territorial waters unlawfully.

According to various sources, Qatar is also pursuing legal action against two Asian nationals onboard after detaining them and confiscating the yacht.

The Bahrain Coast Guard Command says it is responding to the incident by “taking necessary legal measures.”

Qatar is yet to issue a public statement in response to the new events.

In 2017, Bahrain was one of a quartet of countries that enforced an unlawful air, land, and sea embargo on Qatar. While the issue was resolved earlier this year with the signing of the Al Ula Declaration, tensions between Manama and Doha have persisted.

A Bahraini official conducted the first diplomatic visit to Qatar since the embargo in February, delivering an official invitation for discussions to settle outstanding concerns between the two Gulf governments.

While the visit was a step toward officially repairing ties, recent events indicate that tensions still exist.

Over the last year, Bahrain has regularly violated Qatari national waters and airspace. Historically, Qatar and Bahrain had a long-standing territorial dispute over the seas and tiny islands that divide the peninsula from Bahrain’s major islands, which was finally settled in 2001 by the International Court of Justice.

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