Pentagon says Mattis speaks to Qatar's defense minister

WASHINGTON - US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis spoke on Tuesday by phone with his Qatari counterpart following a decision by Arab powers to cut ties to the Gulf ally, a Pentagon spokesman told Reuters, without disclosing the details of their discussion.

The Pentagon earlier on Tuesday renewed praise of Qatar for hosting a vital US air base and for its "enduring commitment to regional security," sticking to a message of reassurance even as President Donald Trump, via Twitter, applauded Arab nations' decision to cut ties.
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