Middle East, News Watch, Side Feature

News Review 01/03/2023

* Oman Opens Airspace to Zionists
* Arab Rulers in talks to bring ‘brotherly Syria’ back into Fold

Oman Opens Airspace to Zionists

Oman’s Civil Aviation Authority said that Omani airspace is now open to all civilian carriers, an indirect announcement that the Gulf State’s airspace will also be open to the carriers of the jewish entity. The Jewish entity’s Foreign Minister Eli Cohen later thanked Omani Sultan Haitham bin Tariq al Said and said that the decision “will shorten the route to Asia, lower costs for ‘Israeli’ citizens and help ‘Israeli’ airlines be more competitive.” Oman consenting to the Jewish entity’s planes in its airspace opens up a corridor for jewish commercial aircraft across the Arabian Peninsula and is an indication of the pragmatic, economics-driven incremental normalisation happening between the jewish entity and the Gulf States. The change is convenient for the Jewish entity’s carriers going to places like India and Australia and will shorten flight times by as much as two hours for some routes. Saudi Arabia announced in 2022 that it would open its airspace to all carriers and allow the Jewish entity’s planes to fly over its territory, despite not having diplomatic ties with the Jewish entity.

Arab Rulers in talks to bring ‘brotherly Syria’ back into Fold

Senior Arab government figures visited Syrian President Bashar al-Assad recently in order to bring Syria back into the fold of the Arab world. Parliamentarians from nine Arab countries, as well as Palestinian representatives, made up a delegation that visited Damascus reflecting a continuation in the thawing of relations with Assad, who for over a decade has been isolated from most of the region. The visit followed a mini-summit in Baghdad that affirmed the Arab League’s intentions of having Syria return to the organisation despite its devastating civil war. Hanafy Ali El-Gebali an Egyptian politician told reporters after landing in Damascus that the Arab delegation was “visiting brotherly Syria to support the Syrian people” after the quake. He cited the joint statement from the Baghdad meeting about the need to begin the process of “bringing Syria back to the Arab fold”.