Communication of channels continue to open between Syria, Arab states

ERBIL, KRG, Iraq (North Press) – A second step that brings back to mind Damascus two-week-efforts of rapprochement, a telephone call was made yesterday between Syria’s president Bashar al-Assad and Sultan Haitham bin Tariq al-Said, Sultan of Oman.

Sultanate of Oman downgraded its representation in Syria  since the Syrian war erupted in 2011, yet it reinstated whole diplomatic representatives to Syria in October 2020 and appointed an ambassador in Syria following a similar move by the UAE in late 2018.

In his first trip to an Arab country since 2011, Assad met leader of the UAE ensuing controversy in the political arena over the reasons and motivations behind the visit long years after estrangement. 

Over the past years, the Arab countries started to, at varying levels, normalizing relations with Syria such as the UAE, Iraq, Egypt, Bahrain and Jordan. Also, some European states announced willingness to reopen their embassies in Syria’s capital, Damascus.

Assad will likely visit other Arab states, including Sultanate of Oman, according to monitors.  

As for Iraq, it has almost normal relations with Assad as Iraq confirmed on multiple international occasions.  

Steps to build ties with Damascus anger the US, where it rejected normalization with the Syrian government unless a comprehensive political solution is found that can end the Syrian crisis.    

The US reiterated its denial to the normalization when the US Secretary of State said “we are profoundly disappointed” from Assad’s visit to the UAE.  

Nowadays, there is possibility that Assad may take part in the Arab Summit scheduled in Algeria in early November and to be reinstated in the Arab League.  

However, the issue is yet to be decided under pressures by western countries and Arab reservations over the Syrian government policy adopted during the Syrian crisis.  

Egypt has a significant role in paving the way for Damascus to return to its Arab surrounding given it has strong relations with Moscow, Assad’s key ally.  

After the Syrian war started in 2011, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries also shuttered their embassies in Syria.

Assad’s visit to the UAE and the phone call with the Sultanate of Oman came as the world as well as Syria are paying close attention to the Russian-Ukrainian war.

The Syrian war devastated relations of the Syrian government with the majority of the world governments, including the Arab states. 

Reporting by Hozan Zubeir