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Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Sultan Qaboos was a true friend to India, says PM Narendra Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Sultan Qaboos's strong leadership had built a vibrant strategic partnership between India and Oman and that he was a true "friend to India".

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Published: January 11, 2020 8:59:28 am
Oman’s Sultan Qaboos bin Said and Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday condoled the demise of Oman’s Sultan Qaboos bin Said. He said Qaboos’s strong leadership had built a vibrant strategic partnership between India and Oman and that he was a true “friend to India”.

Taking to Twitter, Modi said, “Sultan Qaboos was a true friend of India and provided strong leadership for developing a vibrant strategic partnership between India and Oman. I will always cherish the warmth and affection I received from him. May his soul rest in peace.”

In his nearly five decades in power, Qaboos, 79, transformed his Persian Gulf kingdom from an isolated enclave into a developed nation. He was known for brokering quiet talks between global foes.

Read this story in Malayalam

Internationally, as the longest-serving leader in the Arab world, he used Oman’s place in a turbulent region, next to one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes, to become a discreet but essential diplomatic player.

In a region rife with sectarianism, political divides, and foreign interference, the soft-spoken, diminutive Qaboos championed a foreign policy of independence and nonalignment. He became a rare leader who maintained ties with a wide range of powers that hated one another, including Iran, Israel, the United States, Saudi Arabia and the Houthi rebels in Yemen.

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