Xinhua Middle East news summary at 2200 GMT, Jan. 4

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KUWAIT CITY -- Saudi Arabia and Qatar will reopen land, air and sea borders starting from Monday evening, Kuwait's Foreign Minister Sheikh Ahmad Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Sabah said Monday.

"The Kuwaiti emir made a phone call with the Qatari emir and Saudi Arabia's crown prince, who both confirmed their intention to start a new beginning in their relations," the minister said in a televised address. (Kuwait-Saudi Arabia-Qatar-Ties)

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GAZA -- A senior Hamas official said on Monday that Hamas agreed to hold the general elections in the Palestinian territories after four countries have guaranteed the success of the elections.

The guarantees were given by Egypt, Qatar, Turkey and Russia, said Taher al-Nono, an aide to Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh, in a press statement. (Palestine-Elections)

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TEHRAN -- South Korean oil tanker Hankuk Chemi was seized on Monday by Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) in the Gulf over "repeated violations" of environmental protocols, semi-official news agency Fars reported.

"The tanker, departing from the Saudi port of Al-Jubail, was seized when sailing in the Gulf by the Zulfiqar fleet in the first Naval District of the IRGC for repeated violations of marine environmental laws," the IRGC said in a statement. (Iran-South Korea-Tanker)

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SANAA -- Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi militia said they fired 75 ballistic missiles at Saudi Arabia's border cities in 2020, the group's military spokesman Yahya Sarea said in a statement on Monday.

The militia also fired other 178 ballistic missiles at Yemeni cities in the past year, targeting the government military sites, Sarea said in the statement through the group's al-Masirah television. (Yemen-Houthi-Missiles) Enditem

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