According to the foreign minister of Israel, Oman, a country in the Gulf of Arabia, has chosen to permit Israeli aircraft to pass in its airspace.
Another indication that Israel and several Arab nations are developing closer ties was the declaration.
Without mentioning Israel, Oman’s Civil Aviation Authority tweeted that it “affirms that the Sultanate’s airspace is available for all carriers that meet the Authority’s conditions for overflying.”
The action would reduce the flying distance between Israel and Asia and follows a similar move by Saudi Arabia from the previous year.
Foreign Minister Eli Cohen said, “This is an important and historic decision for the Israeli economy and Israeli passengers,” adding that the United States had a hand in making a choice.
Israel and Oman had always enjoyed close relations, which came to light in 2018 when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu paid Oman a surprise visit—the first such visit in more than 20 years.
The Abraham Accords, negotiated by the United States, did not include Oman among the four nations that signed normalization agreements with Israel in 2020.
As part of the agreements, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco, and Sudan all pledged to normalize relations with Israel.
The sultanate was quiet in promoting talks between Israelis and Palestinians for a long time. With Saudi Arabia to its north and Iran to its east, Oman, located on the southernmost tip of the Arabian Peninsula, has a long history of acting as a quiet broker in the area and choosing to keep out of the conflict between the two regional superpowers.
Moreover, Oman has acted as a go-between for the US and Iran, the primary foe of Israel. Oman has assisted in releasing captives and hostages held by armed organizations and hosted the covert negotiations that ultimately resulted in the 2015 Iran nuclear accord.
In his first trip outside of Syria since the earthquake, Syrian President Bashar Assad was received by Oman earlier this week.