While an international security conference is under way in Germany, another has been organised by the four countries blockading Qatar.
Held on Friday in Munich, the conference’s objective was to encourage the imposition of sanctions against Qatar.
“The countries imposing a sea, land and air blockade on Qatar invited journalists to attend their own meeting,” Al Jazeera’s Hashem Ahelbarra, reporting from Munich, said.
“When no one showed up, organisers reportedly hired a PR company ... and the room was filled with young women who told us they were mostly from Eastern Europe.
“One of them read a statement she’d been handed by organisers.”
Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic ties with Qatar on June 5, 2017, and imposed a land, sea and air embargo, accusing it of supporting “terrorism”.
Qatar has repeatedly denied the allegation.
“I would like to say at today’s conference that I am surprised by what is being done by the state of Qatar, and I think that Germany, Europe and the whole world should stop Qatar in any way,” one of the attending women had said.
When asked by an Al Jazeera reporter why they were attending the event, some said they were paid to do so.
Another woman, presented as a senior analyst at a Washington-based think-tank, called upon the UN, the US and India to stop purchasing oil and gas from Qatar.
Similar meetings continue to take place elsewhere in many European countries, the correspondent said.
Many of the events are said to have been orchestrated and financed mostly by the Saudi-led group.
More than eight months since the start of the crisis, the US and the EU have called on the countries to engage in dialogue.
But the quartet issued a 13-point list of demands, including the shutdown of Qatar-based media network Al Jazeera, limiting ties with Iran and expelling Turkish troops stationed in the country as a prerequisite to lifting the blockade.
Qatar rejected all the demands, denouncing them as attempts to infringe its sovereignty.
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