Israel’s foreign minister said Thursday that the Gulf Arab state of Oman has decided to allow Israeli planes to fly through its airspace. The announcement was another sign of closer ties between Israel and some Arab countries.
Oman’s Civil Aviation Authority tweeted that it “affirms that the Sultanate’s airspace is open for all carriers that meet the requirements of the Authority for overflying,” without directly mentioning Israel.
The move comes on the heels last year of a similar step by Saudi Arabia, and would shorten the flying distance between Israel and Asia.
“This is a significant and historic decision for the Israeli economy and Israeli travelers,” said Foreign Minister Eli Cohen, who said there had been American involvement in the decision.
In Washington, Adrienne Watson, the National Security spokesperson, welcomed Oman’s decision, calling it a ‘’historic step’” that completes a process begun last year, during President Joe Biden’s visit to the region “when Saudi Arabia similarly opened its airspace to all civilian planes.”