Qatar on Wednesday termed a new blacklist released by the Saudi Arab-led bloc as a “disappointing surprise”, addind that it was doing all it could to fight militancy, reported Reuters. “It comes as a disappointing surprise that the blockading countries are still pursuing this story as part of their smear campaign against Qatar,” said Communications Director Sheikh Saif bin Ahmed Al Thani on Wednesday. “This latest list provides further evidence that the blockading countries are not committed to the fight against terrorism. As we have previously stated, all individuals with links to terrorism in Qatar have been prosecuted.”

On Tuesday, the four Arab states had added 18 groups and individuals allegedly having links to Qatar to their terrorist list. The new names include nine entities in Yemen and Libya. Qatar’s Communications Director Sheikh Saif bin Ahmed Al Thani, however, said the decision had no basis.

On July 21, United Arab Emirates’ Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash had lauded Qatar’s decision to amend its anti-terrorism laws and called it a positive step in the ongoing crisis between the country and the four Arab states.

On June 5, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt had severed diplomatic relations with Qatar accusing it of backing terrorism. Other countries in the region had followed. US President Donald Trump had initially praised Saudi’s move to isolate Qatar. However, the US had later signed an agreement with Qatar on measures the isolated Gulf nation can take to curb the funding of militancy, and attempted to mediate the crisis.

The list presented to Qatar by the Arab countries demanded that it cut ties with Iran, hand over extremists and shut down Al Jazeera. It also demanded compensation and called for an end to Turkey’s military presence in Qatar, among other things.