Speaking to the website of the Strategic Council on Foreign Relations, Mohammad Qasem Mohebali, referring to reports on the Qatari Foreign Minister’s secret visit to Riyadh, said: Considering the upcoming summit of the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council, Saudi Arabia believes Qatar’s absence at the summit will face the summit with difficulty if not leading to its failure.

Referring to Saudi efforts to reduce hostility to Ansarollah in Yemen through the mediation of Oman and Jordan, he said, therefore, Riyadh is interested in normalizing its strained relations on different fronts.

According to Mohebali, the shift in the Saudi approach came from regional developments. He said: “After the withdrawal of US troops from Syria, changes are taking place and new lineups are being formed in Syria.”

On Qatar’s motive for normalizing relations with Saudi Arabia, he said: With the US military pullout, the lineup in Syria has practically changed and the lineup in northeast Syria has become Russian-Syrian. Naturally, the Qataris may not see a future for their favourite current.

Referring to the unrests in Iraq and Lebanon, Turkey’s policies and actions in Syria and other developments in the region, the analyst said, Saudi Arabia may have concluded that this country should seize the opportunity of the developments in the region.

He added, for example, Saudi Arabia is trying to avoid inflicting more damage on itself in the war against Yemen through political negotiations. If Saudi Arabia is ready to negotiate with Ansarollah and wants to satisfy them by giving them concessions, it may be because it feels that Yemen can be a lever for Iran to exert pressure on Saudi Arabia and now it has the opportunity to seize this lever in its favour.  On the other hand, if Saudi Arabia can somehow free itself from Yemen’s swamp by giving concessions to Ansarollah, it will both reduce the heavy burden of military intervention costs on Yemen and ease the pressure on public and regional opinion.