Saudi Arabia releases two women's rights activists, Samar Badawi and Nassima al-Sadah, after they completed and served their sentences. Both women were detained in July 2018 along with a dozen other activists. Human rights group welcome the release, with Human Rights Watch praising the women's activism.
Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates both summon their Lebanese ambassadors after Lebanese Foreign Minister Charbel Wehbe accused the Gulf States of playing a role in the rise of ISIL in a heated exchange with a Saudi guest during an interview yesterday. Wehbe has since apologized for his remarks.
The World Trade Organization rules that the Saudi government violated Qatar’s intellectual property rights by promoting the pirate TV station beoutQ, which aired Qatari programs like beIN Sports after Saudi Arabia and several other Middle Eastern countries cut ties with the Kingdom during the Qatar diplomatic crisis. The Qatari Communications Minister applauds the decision, while Saudi Arabia denies any involvement.
Responding to Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif's comments that Iran is "open to dialogue with its neighbors", Saudi Arabia's Adel al-Jubeir blames Iran for recent tensions in the Middle East and for attacks on ships and oil facilities; which Iran denies.
United States President Barack Obama, at the Gulf Cooperation Council Summit in Saudi Arabia, says the United States will continue to deter and confront aggression against Gulf Arab states; joins others in warning the fragile cease-fire in Syria is on the verge of collapse; pledges vigilance about Iran's destabilizing activities in the Middle East; wants Gulf allies to offer more democratic reforms and improve human rights; and, says the U.S. and its Gulf partners should wait to see whether Iraq can resolve its political crisis before committing more financial aid which is impeding the fight against ISIL.
A Middle Eastern coalition led by the Saudi Arabian army and Egyptian navy attacks positions in Yemen for the second successive day, resulting in at least ten deaths in Saada Governorate. Saudi Arabia declares that it will enforce a "no-fly zone".