AP NEWS

World leaders travel to Oman to meet its newly named sultan

January 12, 2020 GMT
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This image made from video shows Oman's new sultan Haitham bin Tariq Al Said, takes part in canon firing salute ceremony outside the Royal Family Council in Muscat, Oman, Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020. Sultan Qaboos bin Said, the Mideast's longest-ruling monarch who seized power in a 1970 palace coup and pulled his Arabian sultanate into modernity while carefully balancing diplomatic ties between adversaries Iran and the U.S., has died. He was 79. (Oman TV via AP)
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This image made from video shows Oman's new sultan Haitham bin Tariq Al Said, takes part in canon firing salute ceremony outside the Royal Family Council in Muscat, Oman, Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020. Sultan Qaboos bin Said, the Mideast's longest-ruling monarch who seized power in a 1970 palace coup and pulled his Arabian sultanate into modernity while carefully balancing diplomatic ties between adversaries Iran and the U.S., has died. He was 79. (Oman TV via AP)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — World leaders traveled Sunday to Oman to meet the country’s new sultan, named just a day earlier after the death of the nation’s longtime ruler Sultan Qaboos bin Said.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Prince Charles were among those who arrived in Muscat to meet Oman’s new ruler, Sultan Haitham bin Tariq Al Said. Oman was once a British protectorate.

Other leaders included Kuwait’s ruling emir, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah, as well as Qatar’s ruling emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, Abu Dhabi’s powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and the president of Yemen’s internationally recognized government, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, also visited.

Sultan Haitham was Oman’s culture minister before being named as the successor to Sultan Qaboos, the Middle East’s longest-ruling monarch whose death was announced Saturday. He died at the age of 79 after years of an undisclosed illness.

Sultan Haitham, 66, has pledged to follow Sultan Qaboos’ example of promoting peace and dialogue in the Mideast. Oman has served as an interlocutor between Iran and the U.S., which are facing a level of unprecedented tensions. Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif traveled to Muscat on Sunday as well to meet Sultan Haitham.

Oman sits on the eastern edge of the Arabian Peninsula.