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Published on : Jul 17, 2017

Proof, in the form of a detailed investigation into Qatar’s probe that its government news websites and social media accounts were hacked, seem to have come out. A post on the Washington Post in this regard suggests that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) had arranged for the hacking, which led to the posting of provocative and false statements linked to the emir of Qatar. The statements prompted a diplomatic crisis and countries including the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Egypt severed transport and diplomatic ties with the country, condemning it of supporting terrorism.

Qatar’s emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, was cited on the social media in May, allegedly praising Hamas and stating that Iran was an Islamic power. Qatar had stated in late May that the remarks linked to the emir were fake and were posted by hackers, an explanation that was rejected by the Gulf states.

The recent post regarding the hacking instance stated that intelligence officials from the U.S. learned of newly reviewed information last week that demonstrate that top officials from the UAE government had discussed about the plan to hack Qatar’s sites on May 23, a day before the false comments were posted under the emir’s name. The post stated that it was, however, not clear if the UAE paid for the hacks to be executed or was directly involved in them.

The report was denied by Yousef al-Otaiba, UAE’s Ambassador, saying that the report was false. His statement said that Qatar’s behavior was true and that the country was indeed involved in supporting, funding, and enabling extremist activities from Taliban to Hamas, encouraging radicalization, inciting violence, and ignoring the security and stability of neighboring states.

The U.S. FBI was known previously to be working in collaboration with Qatar to probe the hacking.