The rising tension between the US and Iran after the killing of the Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, has prompted Oman to talk about its concerns in the region. On Sunday a statement by the Oman Ministry of Foreign Affairs requested Iran and the US to pursue a dialogue and look for diplomatic means to resolve the ongoing conflict.
Oman, a country located in the Strait of Hormuz, has always maintained diplomatic and economic ties with Iran. With the recent developments in the US-Iran relations and the world awaiting the possibilities of any drastic action between the countries, Oman has stepped forward seeking de-escalation of the situation.
Oman has mediated several conflicts in the region and maintained a neutral stance during these conflicts. Oman shares the Strait with Iran and has always been considered to be diplomatic and has always maintained a cordial relation with the rest of the world.
The tweet by Oman News Agency about the recent developments of the rising tension between US and Iran read:
"The sultanate is following with great interest the recent developments of the deplorable state of tension and escalation between # Alolayat_altdh and the Islamic Republic # Iran and calls on both parties to give priority to the language of dialogue and the search for diplomatic means to resolve the contentious issues in ending the conflict in the region."
Oman's diplomatic measures in the Strait of Hormuz
Oman has been an influential mediator during tension in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman under the rule of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said. With the ongoing tensions there is a chance that Oman might once again be a part of the deescalation process in the region. The probabilities in the Strait could lead to several economic and military changes as the oil prices have surged since the conflict began.
Strait of Hormuz is the most sensitive transportation hub for the global supplies of oil with 30 percent of the trade happening through the region. The current scenario has aggravated the situation in the region.
Earlier there were reports that Oman would be sending a delegation to Iran to deescalate the tension between the US and Iran. But in his press conference on Sunday, the Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi said that Oman had not sent a delegation. The report had also claimed that Iran had refused any mediation from Oman. The spokesman refuted these claims made by the Beirut-based Al-Mayadeen which is close to the Lebanese Hezbollah and Iran.
Deployment by the Royal Navy
The present turmoil has led the Royal Navy to deploy HMS Montrose a Type 23 frigate and HMS Defender a Type 45 destroyer, to the region between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman to secure the British flagged ships and resume maritime patrols in the region.
The Sultanate of Oman's Minister Responsible for Foreign Affairs Yusuf bin Alawi condoled his Iranian counterpart Mohammad-Javad Zarif on Saturday evening and talked to him about the recent developments in the region. Details with regard to the content of their talks have not been revealed to the public.
During the past four decades, Oman has maintained good relations with Iran and has mediated several times between Tehran and Washington. Oman has mediated the nuclear talks between the two countries and was also a key actor who helped in resolving issues related to the exchange of prisoners.