Over the past two years, the US government has bolstered its support for both Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

As the blockade of Qatar continues, the US position is that outside pressure on either side would not contribute to the parties resolving it themselves

But as the US ratchets up its military deployment to the Middle East in response to a mounting crisis with Iran, Qatar is once again playing a crucial role.

qatar airways

With the knowledge of, if not at the request of, the US secretary of state, Qatar’s foreign minister is engaging in talks with Iranian leaders in a bid to reduce tensions.

Al Jazeera’s Mike Hanna reports from Washington, DC.