Sultan Qaboos of Oman, Longest Serving Gulf Leader, Passes Away

Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al-Said is known as modern-day Oman’s founding father. — EPA

Caravan News

MUSCAT — Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al-Said of Oman, the longest-serving Gulf monarch and modern-day Oman’s founding father has died, state media reported.

Qaboos ruled Oman for five decades before his death on Friday. He overthrew his father in a bloodless coup in 1970.

In a short obituary from the country’s state news agency, Oman said Sultan Qaboos died Friday “after establishing a comprehensive renaissance” over the fifty years since he became monarch.

“This renaissance resulted in a balanced foreign policy,” the obituary said. It didn’t give a cause of death; the monarch has suffered from an undisclosed illness for many years, according to reports

The 79-year-old bachelor sultan had no children and he hadn’t publicly named an heir.

Meanwhile, Oman on Saturday named new Ruler hours after it announced the death of Sultan Qaboos bin Said, state media reported.

Haitham bin Tariq al-Said, who was Culture Minister till now, has been named as the new ruler, according to state-run Oman News Agency.

According to state obituary, the country will halt work in the public and private sectors for three days and fly flags at half-mast for the next 40 days.

Qaboos was born November 18, 1940, according to the Oman News Agency. He was also a graduate of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in England and served in the British army.

As ruler, Qaboos sought to solidify ties with western allies. Oman has a particularly deep-rooted relationship with the United Kingdom. Queen Elizabeth II visited in 2010 to commemorate Oman’s 40th National Day.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday condoled the death of Sultan Qaboos bin Said al Said of Oman, describing him as a beacon of peace for the region.


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