Muscat, Oman
Muscat, OmaniStock

Oman's Foreign Minister, Sayyid Badr Albusaidi, plans to visit Ramallah in the coming weeks, i24NEWS reported on Monday.

According to the report, as part of the upcoming trip, Albusaidi expressed his desire to ascend the Al-Aqsa Mosque on Jerusalem's Temple Mount, and contacted the Israeli Foreign Ministry to coordinate his arrival.

Sources familiar with the matter told i24NEWS that as part of the negotiations, Foreign Minister Eli Cohen is attempting to set up a rare meeting with Albusaidi.

It is not yet clear whether the Omani will give his consent to the high-level meeting and where would it take place.

The negotiations are taking place as Israel continues its efforts to expand the Abraham Accords and normalize ties with new countries in the region. Oman and Israel have no official diplomatic relations, though the country has been named as a possibility to join the Accords, following the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan.

While the two countries have no official relations, Oman’s Civil Aviation Authority announced earlier this year that its airspace will be open for all flights leaving Israel. Oman thus joined Saudi Arabia, which opened its airspace to flights from Israel last year.

In addition, there have been on-and-off relations between the two nations for years.

In October 2018, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made a surprise visit to Oman, and it seemed there was a warming of ties between the countries.

Later, Minister Israel Katz also visited Oman, where he presented a plan for the construction of a railway between Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf.

In March, i24NEWS reported that Cohen held a rare phone call with Albusaidi, shortly after the historic announcement by the Sultanate of Oman that it was opening its air space to Israeli aircraft.

Sources told i24NEWS the two discussed matters relating to the opening of the skies and also addressed the heightened tensions between Israel and the Palestinians, ahead of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

Albusaidi told Al-Monitor in an interview earlier this month that his country is “open” to normalizing ties with Israel but not at the expense of the Palestinian Arabs.

Albusaidi indicated that the creation of a Palestinian state would be a prerequisite for Oman to establish full ties with Israel.