Thursday, December 03, 2020

Oman to open an embassy in the West Bank

By F.T Hupsel - July 01, 2019
Section: [Main News]
Tags: [Ramallah]

The foreign ministry announced on 26 June, Oman will be opening an embassy in Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, making it the first Arab Gulf state to do so.

A statement from the official Oman News Agency said: “In continuation of the Sultanate of Oman’s supportive approach to the brotherly Palestinian people, the Sultanate has decided to open a new diplomatic mission to the state of Palestine at the embassy level.”

The agency also declared a delegation from the Omani Foreign Ministry will travel to Ramallah to initiate the opening of the embassy.

The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates welcomed the decision.

"I hope the embassy will help in educating the Omani government on the real nature of the Israeli occupation," a senior official in the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Hanan Ashrawi, said at a news conference in Ramallah.

Palestinian Ambassador to Oman, Tayseer Farhat, described on Wednesday the decision by Oman to open an embassy in Palestine as "historical.", reported Xinhua News Agency.

Oman's announcement coincided with the controversial United States-led economic "workshop" in Bahrain.

Despite earlier rumours that it would attend, Oman did not participate in the Bahrain workshop.

According to Reuters, Oman's move also comes after recent apparent warming of ties between the sultanate and Israel. 

In October last year, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the Gulf state and held surprise talks with ruler Sultan Qaboos in the capital, Muscat.

Israel and Oman do not have official diplomatic ties, but the meeting raised Palestinian fears of a normalisation of relations between the two countries and marked the first visit to Oman by an Israeli leader in more than 20 years.

But in February, Yusuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah, Oman's minister of foreign affairs, said the sultanate would not normalise its relations with Israel until a sovereign Palestinian state had been established.

Only two countries in the region, Egypt and Jordan have peace treaties with Israel.


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