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In Oman, Israeli minister promotes cooperation between Israel, Gulf states

In addition to joint economic and social-development matters, Israel sees Oman as an ally to combat the Iranian regional threat.

An Omani desert landscape. Credit: Wikimedia Commons via  by Hendrik Dacquin.
An Omani desert landscape. Credit: Wikimedia Commons via by Hendrik Dacquin.

Israeli Transportation and Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz said on Thursday in Oman that Israel and the Gulf states should cooperate on civilian issues such as aviation security and transportation.

“In my view, cooperation … can and should be expanded,” Katz, who attended a transportation conference in the Omani capital of Muscat, told Reuters. “Israel also has a lot to offer when it comes to water desalination, irrigation, agriculture and medicine.”

He also said that a railway from Israel to Oman “makes sense.”

The trip comes two weeks after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the country and met with its ruler, Sultan Qaboos bin Said. It is the first trip made by an Israeli prime minister since Shimon Peres in 1996.

Katz said these visits to Oman by Israel officials “are part of a wider trend of strengthening ties between Israel and the Gulf countries based on common interests and a mutual recognition of the potential benefits for both sides, both in terms of contending with common challenges and threats, as well as opportunities.”

Israel also sees Oman as an ally to combat the Iranian regional threat.

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