This article was originally published by FPRI on 19 May 2014.
Oman has recently opened the doors of a new school in downtown Muscat to teach Persian language classes to its residents, both national and expatriate. It is being run by the Omani Ministry of Education, but students who complete the 12-week courses will receive a certificate from the Ferdowsi University of Mashhad in Iran. The Iranian Ambassador to Oman, Ali Akbar Sibeveih, hopes that Oman will open an equivalent Arabic language institute in Tehran in the near future. Undoubtedly, some of the first to register will be some of the 100-person delegation of Omani businessmen who have made plans to visit Iran in the upcoming months to develop cross-country business ties. Or perhaps those interested in furthering plans for a proposed natural gas pipeline that will run between Oman, Iran, and India.
Since the final vestiges of Persian rule were finally cleared out of Oman in the 18th century, Oman and Iran have maintained fairly consistent friendly ties, even when such ties appeared to be inconsistent with Oman’s joining the GCC with its Saudi-led antipathy toward Iran.