By Farzad Farhadi

Who is the new Sultan of Oman?

January 13, 2020 - 11:30

TEHRAN - Haitham bin Tariq bin Taimur sworn in as the ninth Sultan of Oman. Haitham bin Tariq was born in 1954 and in some cases served as special envoy to the late sultan Qaboos Bin Saeed.

The new sultan is the cousin of the late sultan and his genealogy goes back to one of the oldest Arab families ruled in the country. He graduated from the Oxford University Foreign Service Program in 1979. The Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Political Affairs was among his other executive positions. He was sent to the Arab League Summit in Jordan as Oman’s representative during his last mission. 

He has previously held various positions, including the Chairman of the committee for the future vision of "Oman 2040? and the Minister of Heritage and Culture from February 2002 to January 2020. Haitham bin Tariq also held several posts in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, such as the secretary general and the deputy foreign minister for political affairs. He was the first head of the Oman Football Association from 1983 to 1986.

Unlike the late Sultan of Oman, who had no children, Haitham bin Tariq has four children.

The new sultan was named after request by the Defense Council to appoint Qaboos bin Said's successor.

A few weeks earlier and following the heightened speculations over the worsening physical conditions of Sultan Qaboos bin Said, the Guardian newspaper released a report on his successor. According to the newspaper, when the physical conditions of the late sultan worsened, he had secretly named his preferred successor in a sealed envelope and submitted it to the royal family council.

The succession process involves the opening of sealed letters in the court in Muscat identifying the sultan’s choice of successor, if the court cannot agree among itself.

Qaboos has no children and has not publicly appointed a successor but he secretly recorded his choice in a sealed envelope addressed to the royal family council.

The name of the most important successors of the late sultan was also published earlier.

1.    Asa'ad bin Tariq bin Taimur al Said: Asa'ad was born in 1954. He studied at the same military academy where Sultan Qaboos graduated. Asa'ad bin Tariq was the personal representative of Sultan Qaboos and has held many important positions so far. Omani observers also believe he has the support of the armed forces as he has commanded divisions such as the armored brigade for several years and is a brigadier general.

He has been the personal envoy of Sultan Qaboos on several occasions to convey his messages to countries’ leaders and attend the Arab League Summit and the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Persian Gulf on behalf of the sultan. Asa'ad manages many economic projects in Oman and enjoys economic partnerships and friendly relations with the leaders of the Persian Gulf states. 

2.    Haitham bin Tariq bin Taimur: Haitham was also born in 1954. He has been the Minister of Heritage and Culture for more than a decade. Sometimes he was the sultan’s special envoy to some of the meetings and ceremonies, such as the British royal wedding in 2011. He has his own certain characteristics and is referred to as a rebellious person. He also has many economic interests in Oman. 

3.    Shihab bin Tariq bin Taimur Al Said: Shihab was born in 1956. He was a close advisor to Sultan Qaboos and a naval commander. He chairs the Research Council of Oman. He carries out many economic activities in Oman and is an ambitious person. In the past, it is said that he disagreed with Sultan Qaboos on some matters.

4.    Taimur bin Asaad bin Tariq bin Taimur al Said: Taimur who was born in 1981, is the secretary- general of the Research Council. He has conducted several important plans in Oman and is a member of the board of Bank Dhofar, one of the most important Omani banks. Taimur is active in the media and is known as a popular figure. He has studied in Scotland and Britain and has completed courses in the United States.

5.    Fahd bin Mahmoud al Said: Fahd was born in 1944 and serves as the deputy prime minister for the council of ministers.

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