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Oman

Everything you need to know about Oman: news, reviews, in-depth analysis, opinion and more

Oman: Strategic Country on the South Western Arabian Peninsula

Islam was introduced in Oman only during the 7th Century although Arabs started inhabiting this Mediterranean country since 9th Century B.C. Oman was ruled by the Portuguese from 1508 to 1648 A.D. and later the Turkish rule followed that lasted till 1741 when Sultan Ahmad ibn Said finally overthrew the Turks. The Said dynasty continues to rule this strategically important country located at the western tip of the Arabian Peninsula. Oman was relatively isolated during the reign of Sultan Said bin Taimur who was finally deposed by his son Qaboos bin Said in 1970. The country has since undertaken important economic and political reforms including granting voting rights to everyone above 21. Oman also entered into a free trade pact with US in 2006.

Oman Facts and Stats:

    · National Name: Sultanate of Oman
    · Capital: Muscat
    · Total area: 309,500 sq km
    · Population: 2.6 million (UN, 2008)
    · Currency: Rial
    · Languages: Arabic (official), English, Baluchi, Urdu, Indian dialects
    · Ethnicity/ Races: Arab, Baluchi, South Asian (Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Bangladeshi), African
    · Religion: Islam: Ibadhi 75%, Sunni, Shi'a; Hindu
    · GDP (Per Capita): $19,000 (2007 est.)
    · Life Expectancy: 74 years (men), 77 years (women) (UN)
    · Literacy: 81.4% (2003 est.)

Oman Geography and Climate: The majority of Oman is covered with largely unexplored deserts and mountain ranges along the north and southeast coast. Oman also has an exclave in the form of the Musandam peninsula that is separated from the rest of Oman by the UAE. The major towns like Muscat (Oman Capital), Matrah and Sur are located in the north whereas Salalah is in the south.

Omanis enjoy a hot and dry climate in the interior while Omanis living along the coast are accustomed to a humid existence. Oman was covered by oceans long eons back and the greatest evidence of this are the fossilized shells found in the Omani deserts.

Oman Culture and Cuisine:
Although Arabic is the major language spoken in Oman, the country is linguistically diverse with a fair sprinkling of Balochi, Swahili, French, Zanzibar, Hindi and many local dialects across the Omani plains. Although Oman is a relatively conservative country its Sultan Qaboos bin Said allowed women to stand for the local council elections. Islam is the dominant religion and Oman is the last stronghold of the Ibadi sect of Islam. Oman is popular for the curved Khanjar knives worn during ceremonies with ceremonial dresses. Omanis are a hospitable creed and visitors to Omani homes would be greeted with a bowl of dates, qahwa and fruit.

Omani cuisine is quite simple and the preparation often involves marinade and generous sprinkling of meats and spices, the meat eaten include chicken, fish and mutton. No Mediterranean country can ignore Dates and dry fruits and Oman is no exception. Laban, a salty, buttermilk yoghurt drink is a favourite among the Omani people.

Oman Economy:
Oman economy is largely oil fuelled that has bestowed an affluent lifestyle upon the Omanis but the future may not be as rosy on account of Oman’s limited oil reserves in comparison to other Mediterranean states. Agriculture practised is of subsistence level and the main Omani agricultural produce includes dates, limes, grains and vegetables. Oman’s capital Muscat has recently become a tourist hub and also a financial centre.

Oman Tourist Attractions:
Oman has recently emerged as a preferred tourist hub owing to many sightseeing opportunities available to the tourists. Tourists who prefer hiking and trekking should definitely climb the beautiful Jebel Shams Mountain whereas those interested in sand skiing, camel safaris and swimming should let go at by the beautiful coastline that is laden with golden sands.

Other Places to See in Oman include:

    · Bahla in Oman
    · Jabel Akhdar
    · Muscat
    · Nizwa in Oman
    · Salalah
    · Sohar
    · Sur

UAE launches major tourism project

May 2, 2012 at 10:30 PM

Dubai, May 2 (IANS/WAM) The UAE government has launched a major eco-tourism project in the emirate of Sharjah.

Demand for Indian domestic workers abroad: Ravi

May 2, 2012 at 7:50 PM

New Delhi, May 2 (IANS) There is demand for Indian workers of various skill sets such as housemaids and home nurses abroad, including in the Gulf countries, Malaysia, Singapore and in some European nations, Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vyalar Ravi said Wednesday.

Iran seeks regional cooperation for Persian Gulf's security

April 30, 2012 at 6:26 AM

Tehran, April 30 (IANS) Iran has called for regional security cooperation to maintain the security of the Persian Gulf, ISNA news agency reported.

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Sri Lanka rejects Indian offer to upgrade refinery

April 29, 2012 at 3:06 PM

Colombo, April 29 (IANS) Sri Lanka has rejected an Indian offer to upgrade a refinery that is built to refine only Iranian oil, a minister said Sunday.

Sri Lanka rejects Indian offer to upgrade refinery

April 29, 2012 at 12:10 PM

Colombo, April 29 (Xinhua-ANI): Sri Lanka has rejected an Indian offer to upgrade a local refinery which is built to refine only Iranian oil, a minister said on Sunday.

Kerala-born Yusuffali making waves in Gulf

April 23, 2012 at 7:08 PM

Abu Dhabi, April 23 (IANS) Kerala-born M. A. Yusuffali is today dubbed as one of the most influential Indians in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), a political and economic alliance of six Middle Eastern countries - Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman.

Oman industrialist good Samaritan for Vidarbha farm widows (With image)

April 23, 2012 at 7:08 PM

Nagpur, April 23 (IANS) Widows of Vidarbha farmers who ended their lives unable to bear the stress of high debt have found a good Samaritan in an Oman-based industrialist.

Hand shadowgrapher Amar Sen holds infinity in his palm

April 23, 2012 at 12:28 PM

Kolkata, April 23 (IANS) Amar Sen knows literally how to create the world with his fingers. With a swish and a flick of his fingers, grains of sand transform into pictures and, in silhouette, his fingers imitate a tiger, a peepul tree, a bird, a house... almost anything.

FA says Rooney will not play both Euro 2012 and Olympics

April 22, 2012 at 9:51 PM

London, April 22 (Xinhua-ANI): The English Football Association has reassured Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson that his striker Wayne Rooney will not play both Olympic Games and Euro 2012.

Rooney won't play Euro 2012, Olympics: FA

April 22, 2012 at 6:44 PM

London, April 22 (IANS) The English Football Association (FA) has assured Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson that his striker Wayne Rooney will not play in the Olympic Games and Euro 2012.

Etihad Airways launches recruitment drive in Oman

April 16, 2012 at 10:35 PM

Abu Dhabi, April 16 (IANS/WAM) Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has launched a recruitment drive to hire 400 new employees from Oman by the end of 2012.

'Highly-volatile' Iraq should remain 'no-go zone' for international football matches

April 15, 2012 at 5:23 PM

Baghdad, Apr 15(ANI): Professional Footballers Association chief executive Brendan Schwab has said Iraq should remain a no-go zone for international soccer matches because of security concerns.

Pakistanis deported from Greece, Oman

April 12, 2012 at 6:27 PM

Islamabad, April 12 (IANS) A group of 97 Pakistani migrants who were detained in Oman for illegally entering the country were deported Thursday. Another 67 Pakistanis were deported from Greece, media reports said.

Family of Indian journo stranded in Oman fighting legal battle against 'unfair dismissal'

April 12, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Muscat, Apr 12 (ANI): The family of an Indian journalist in Oman, who is fighting a court battle for an year against his alleged unfair dismissal, is stranded without visas as the newspaper he worked for did not renew residence visas of his wife and two young children.

Indonesia quake triggers Indian Ocean tsunami alert

April 11, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Jakarta, Apr 11 (ANI): A massive 8.7 earthquake has struck off the western coast of Indonesia triggering fears of a "devastating" tsunami.

Major quake rattles Sumatra, tsunami alert in India

April 11, 2012 at 3:39 PM

New Delhi/Hong Kong, April 11 (IANS) Many states along India's east coast felt tremors as a high intensity earthquake rocked Sumatra Wednesday, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said. A tsunami warning has been issued in India and 27 other countries

Tsunami alert following Indonesia quake

April 11, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Hong Kong, April 11 (IANS) A tsunami alert has been sounded in 28 places across the world, including India, after a massive earthquake rocked Indonesia Wednesday.

Singhvi calls for need to establish global treaty to combat Somali piracy

April 10, 2012 at 8:11 PM

New Delhi, Apr 10 (ANI): Reacting to report of hijacking of 17 Indian citizens by Somali pirates, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi has called for the need to establish a global treaty to combat such crimes on high seas.

Crew of hijacked Chinese cargo ship rescued

April 7, 2012 at 8:41 AM

Tehran, April 7 (IANS) All 28 Chinese crew members on board a Chinese cargo ship hijacked by Somali pirates have been rescued, the Chinese embassy in Tehran said.

Now, NRIs in Oman must get their documents attested by MEA in India

March 25, 2012 at 12:32 PM

Muscat, Mar.22 (ANI): The Indian Embassy in Oman has advised all its citizens in the country to get their documents attested/apostilled by the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi.

Indian fisherman in Oman brutally beaten for seeking break from work takes shelter in Muscat

March 22, 2012 at 8:42 PM

Muscat, Mar 22 (ANI): An Indian fish vendor in Oman, who was brutally beaten up by relatives of his employer for seeking rest after long hours of working, has arrived in Muscat after running away from Duqm for taking shelter.

Indian fisherman in Oman brutally beaten for seeking break from work takes shelter in Muscat

March 22, 2012 at 11:20 AM

Muscat, Mar 22 (ANI): An Indian fish vendor in Oman, who was brutally beaten up by relatives of his employer for seeking rest after long hours of working, has arrived in Muscat after running away from Duqm for taking shelter.

Indian fish vendor in Oman beaten black and blue for seeking break from work

March 15, 2012 at 9:26 PM

Muscat, Mar 15 (ANI): An Indian fish vendor in Oman has been brutally beaten up by relatives of his employer for seeking rest after long hours of working.

Indian fish vendor in Oman beaten black and blue for seeking break from work

March 15, 2012 at 11:08 AM

Muscat, Mar 15 (ANI): An Indian fish vendor in Oman has been brutally beaten up by relatives of his employer for seeking rest after long hours of working.

Saif Ali Khan flick 'Agent Vinod' to premiere for the first time in Oman

March 3, 2012 at 10:05 PM

Muscat, Mar. 3 (ANI): : Bollywood actors Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor will attend the premiere of their film "Agent Vinod" at the seventh edition of the Muscat International Film Festival (MIFF) on March 25.

Saif Ali Khan flick 'Agent Vinod' to premiere for the first time in Oman

March 3, 2012 at 7:24 PM

Muscat, Mar. 3 (ANI): : Bollywood actors Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor will attend the premiere of their film "Agent Vinod" at the seventh edition of the Muscat International Film Festival (MIFF) on March 25.

Oman firm withdraws use of Ashok Chakra after being challenged by Indian lawyer

February 19, 2012 at 7:49 PM

Muscat, Feb 19(ANI): An Oman-based business firm that has been using images of the Ashoka Chakra on their stationary, hoardings and newspaper advertisements has decided to withdraw such advertisements, an Indian lawyer who highlighted the issue to the Indian embassy has said.

Sunidhi Chauhan to perform in Muscat next month

February 19, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Dubai, Feb 19 (ANI): Bollywood melody star Sunidhi Chauhan is set to perform for Indian music aficionados in Muscat, the capital city of Oman, next month.

Sunidhi Chauhan to perform in Muscat next month

February 19, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Dubai, Feb 19 (ANI): Bollywood melody star Sunidhi Chauhan is set to perform for Indian music aficionados in Muscat, the capital city of Oman, next month.

Oman firm withdraws use of Ashok Chakra after being challenged by Indian lawyer

February 19, 2012 at 11:07 AM

Muscat, Feb 19(ANI): An Oman-based business firm that has been using images of the Ashoka Chakra on their stationary, hoardings and newspaper advertisements has decided to withdraw such advertisements, an Indian lawyer who highlighted the issue to the Indian embassy has said.

Indian expat in Oman challenges 'insult' of Ashok Chakra emblem by Indian-owned firm

February 12, 2012 at 9:59 PM

Muscat, Feb 12(ANI): An Indian lawyer in Oman has challenged the alleged insult to the Indian national emblem, the Ashoka Chakra.

Indian expat in Oman challenges 'insult' of Ashok Chakra emblem by Indian-owned firm

February 12, 2012 at 3:01 PM

Muscat, Feb 12(ANI): An Indian lawyer in Oman has challenged the alleged insult to the Indian national emblem, the Ashoka Chakra.

Yemeni President Saleh reaches US for medical treatment

January 29, 2012 at 8:28 PM

Washington, Jan 29 (ANI): Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has reportedly reached the United States for medical treatment in the latest stage of an effort to help ease the transition from his rule.

Yemeni President Saleh reaches US for medical treatment

January 29, 2012 at 10:27 AM

Washington, Jan 29 (ANI): Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has reportedly reached the United States for medical treatment in the latest stage of an effort to help ease the transition from his rule.

Syrian regime decides to stand up to 'conspiring universe'

January 25, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Damascus (Syria), Jan.25 (ANI): The Syrian regime has vowed to solve its own problems even if "half the universe" is conspiring against it.

'Embattled' Yemen president Saleh to depart for Oman on way to US

January 22, 2012 at 11:11 AM

Damascus, Jan 22 (ANI): Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh will leave soon for Oman, and is expected to arrive in the United States later in the week, it has emerged.

Indian schools in Oman plan infrastructure expansion to meet growing admission demands

January 21, 2012 at 8:11 PM

Muscat, Jan 21 (ANI): Indian schools in Oman have planned a massive infrastructure expansion to meet the increasing demand for admissions.

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