Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Top News from Oman - June 2012

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News from Oman in the later part of June from various sources.

ystery in Al Swaiq
. Last week, during a bullfight in Al Swaiq, one of the bulls unearthed a human skull from the ground. Later, more of the human skeleton was dug up by bystanders. The police were called.

Dina Al Asfer resigned from the Omani National Committee for Human Rights ('NHRC'). A statement from the Committee regarding free speech was released around that time. See: Times of Oman, 'Exercise freedom of expression with restraint, cautions NHRC'. http://www.timesofoman.com/innercat.asp?detail=6771

The Shura Council voted not to lift the immunity of council member Dr. Talib Al Mamari from Liwa. Shura members have immunity from crimes during their membership. A band of locals from Liwa had protested in favor of the immunity last month as reported by local news.

The Sultanate of Oman was featured in several international news outlets in June. Most stories centered around the oil field strike and arrest of activists. Apparently, one of those arrested works for the Ministers' Council. It's been circulating on a popular forum (as of June 28) that those arrested for gathering in groups of more than ten have been/will be released and are awaiting the verdict next month, and others who participated in more offense writings and speech towards officials will face separate proceedings and trial. Public Prosecution has issued several statements reiterating warnings against inciting and offending others under the 'pretext of freedom of speech' during June.

Washington Times, 'Briefly: Group urges Oman to free activists', http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jun/12/briefly-group-urges-oman-to-free-activists/
Economist, 'Waking up too', http://www.economist.com/node/21557354
Yahoo, Maktoob, 'Omani protesters demand release of rights activists', http://maktoob.news.yahoo.com/omani-protesters-demand-release-rights-activists-210135297.html

The 'khareef' or monsoon season is upon us; the Tourism Festival in Salalah opened on June 21.

The second 'Jebalstock' mountain-top concert took place on Jebel Akhdar the second week of June. Bands 50 Degrees and 123 Orion played.

Al Isra W’al Miraj, the Prophet’s Ascension, holiday was celebrated on June 16-17 this year.

Omani Coat of Arms featuring a traditional khanjar

Monday, June 25, 2012

Native and Invader Trees of Oman

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Check out these trees commonly found in the landscape of Oman. 
Links to 'green' societies in Oman:
The Simr (Acacia)
The Simr tree is native to Oman and other regions.
Special features of the Simr are:
  • The wood is excellent for burning and cooking. Simr is the wood of choice for heating when making the traditional dish of 'shuwa' meat marinated and cooked underground for hours.
  • Special quality honey is made from bees which pollinate using the Simr blossoms.
  • Animals and livestock nibble on the Simr buds for nutrition.
  • Simr provides shade to creatures and even cars in the desert climate.
The Palm (Neckla (s.) Nakheel (pl.)
The date producing palm tree is traditionally revered by locals. Their fruits being served with coffee as a custom. Many local families keep gardens with palms and pick their own dates for consumption. Some information about palms:

  • A baby palm tree is called 'fiseela', and it takes about three years to become mature enough to   produce quality dates.
  • The local word for dates is 'seh', but 'timor' and 'belah' are well know Arabic words for dates. Dates which are still ripening are called 'ratab'.
  • Dates ripen once a year starting in the Dema Watayyeen wilayat. Ibri and the Dhahirah region are praised for their quality of dates. Humidity effects the quality of the dates.
  • To harvest dates locals or workers climb the trees using a special belt called 'sooh'.
  • Some popular types of dates: Khalas, Khunaizi, Ksaab, Fard, Hilali, and Nagal. 
Palms of Nakhal City
The Ghaf "Mesquite" Bahri - Invader Tree
Hailing from South and Central America known as the mesquite tree, the scientific name of this species of tree is 'Prosopis juliflora'. Since being brought to Oman about 30 years ago, the Ghaf Bahri has really taken root and spread through out the country. Acting as giant weed here in the Sultanate, this tree has some very interesting qualities:

  • The Ghaf Bahri emits chemicals into the ground which is noxious to other plants and prevents other tree species from sprouting nearby.*
  • The roots can span 50 meters and grows up to five meters yearly.
  • Goats are likely to suffer detrimental effects if 20% or more of their diet comes from pods of the tree*.
  • Local communities in Salalah and elsewhere have taken measures to contain the tree by burning them and bulldozing from the roots. Eradication seems impossible and now concerned experts are looking for ways to contain the tree and make use of them. 

The Ghaf Native

The Ghaf is a famous tree in Oman and the UAE. Native to arid areas, the scientific name is Prosopis cineraria. 

The Qurm 'Mangrove' Tree
The Qurm region in Muscat is named after the tree.

The Frankincense 'Luban' Tree (Boswellia sacra)
A lot has been written on Frankincense, so I will not go into much detail here. In Oman, trees grow in Salalah which are harvested and then sold around Oman and to the world. To burn Frankincense, locally known as 'luban', first light some charcoal. Hookah charcoal works well. Place charcoal in incense burner. Then, place a few chips of luban on top of the charcoal. 

Below is an excerpt from Oman Observer article describing other tree species in Oman.


Perennial beauty of Oman
By Dawood Suleiman al Balushi 

The scientific name is Juniperus excels. It is family: cupressaceous.
This large evergreen and aromatic tree is up to 18m tall. The Al’alan fruits smoke is a good repellant to pests and all kinds of reptiles. The smoke of burning fruit disturbs pests and reptiles to the point that they leave the area. This method could be used to kill mosquitoes, fleas and home insects like bugs… etc. Also, mice hate Al’alan fruits smoke and fled away from this smoke. This tree mainly spreads in the highlands of Al Jabal Al Akhdar and Jabal Shams (Western Hajr Mountains range).
The scientific name is Ziziphus hajarenisi (wild). It is family: Rhamnaceae hajarenisi — It is a medium sized tree with multiple stems similar to Ziziphus (sider) in leaves and spines while it differs from it in fruits. It is rarely eaten by man, unlike the fruits of sider, and animals feed on its fruits and leaves. Also the powder extracted from its leaves is used by women on hair to make it lustrous and healthy. This tree grows in the rocky slopes and valleys (western and eastern of Hajr range).
The scientific name is Monotheca buxifolia. It is a perennial tree naturally growing on semi-cold, rocky highlands. It produces fruits once a year, which are berry blackish when ripe and edible. It is a tree of nutritious and economic value. A tree of the same family was discovered on Jabal Samhan in Dhofar Governorate. It is mainly distributed on western and eastern Hajr mountain range. Only one tree was recorded on Jabal Samhan in Dhofar Governorate.
The scientific name is Olea europaea. It is an evergreen tree, up to 3 m tall. Its hard and termite-resistant wood is mostly used in construction works and for making sticks, while its slender branches are used for making kohl sticks. In drought season, the tender tips of its leaves are cut to feed livestock. It occurs in vegetated mountain areas within the seasonal areas. In Oman, it exists in the Eastern and western Hajr mountain ranges and in Dhofar mountains.
The scientific name is Prunus Arabica. It is family: Rosaceae. It is evergreen tree, up to 3 metre tall. It is deciduous tree leaving the branches leafless for most of the year. flowers are pale pink and small fruit, with hard nut, covered with brown hairs. Its wood is used to make axe and walking sticks handles. Naturally distributed in Musandam mountains and part of the eastern Hajr mountain range above 1000m.

Monday, June 11, 2012

English meanings of Arabic words of well-known trade names and places in Oman

I am putting together a list of English meanings of Arabic words of well-known trade names and places in Oman.
    Arabic to English Brand Names Sultanate of Oman
    Oasis Water Brand of Zubair Company
    English meaning Arabic Brands

  • Nawras - 'Seagull' / النورس - Nawras is the Sultanate's friendly phone service provider.

  • Badr Al Samaa -  'full moon, sky' /  بدر السماء - Badr Al Samaa is a leading hospital chain.

  • Shatti Qurum - 'beach, type of tree called qurm' - Famous area in Muscat next to the beach.

  • LuLu Hypermarket - 'pearl' / لؤلؤ - LuLu's Hypermarket is a leading retailer in the Gulf region.

  • Safeer Mall/Market - 'ambassador' سفير - Safeer - Major retailer of malls and hypermarkets.

  • Almarai - 'meadows' / المراعي  - Brand of dairy products from Saudi but widely consumed in Oman and the GCC.

  • Sharqiyah - 'Easterly' - from the Arabic word 'East' / الشرق / -  Sharqiyah is the region which extends the furthest East in Oman. Sur is a famous city in Sharqiyah.

  • Dakhiliya - 'interior' /  الداخلية -  Dakhiliya is a region in the interior of Oman. Niswa is located in this region. 'Dakhel' means 'inside' in Arabic. The Ministry of Interior is called Wisarat Dakhiliya in Arabic.

  • Wadi Kabir -'Valley, Big' - An area in Muscat near Ruwi. 

  • Majan - Historical name of 'Oman'.  Also, a boat in the Oman Sail fleet is named Air Majan.

  • Waha/Oasis Water - 'Oasis' / واحة. -  Leading brand of bottled water.

  • Jebel Shams - 'Mountain, Sun' and Jebel Akhdar - 'Mountain, Green' - Popular tourist   destinations.

  • Ras Al Hamra - 'Head, Red' - Area in Muscat where PDO company is located. Ras refers to a coastal point such as Ras al Jins.

  • Madinat Al-Ilam -'City of Media/Information' - Area in Muscat near Qurum.

  • Bahja Mall - 'Joy' / بهجة - A mall which used to house Marks & Spencer located in the Seeb area. There is also a cinema on site.

  • Al Maha Petrol - 'Oryx (antelope)' /  المها - Trade name of petroleum company and provider of service stations.

  • Amouage -'waves' / أمواج - Brand name of exquisite attar perfume made in Oman and of the Integrated Tourism Complex, 'the Wave'.

  • Mina'a Al Fahal - Port, 'strong and powerful guy; stallion'/  ميناء الفحل - Location of PDO refinery and operations in Muscat metro area. 

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Queen's Diamond Jubilee

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Queen's Diamond Jubilee Concert
'Kate' dressed in red for the flotilla along the Thames
Bahraini and Saudi Royals attended the reception
HM Queen Elizabeth's Coronation
The British Ambassador to Oman held a function at his home for the occasion, and other Brits celebrated at the Hyatt in Muscat

UK embassy marks Queen's 60 years in Oman

Times News Service
June 07, 2012

Muscat: On the occasion of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee, British Ambassador Jamie Bowden hosted an official celebration at his residence in Muscat.

The guest of honour was His Highness Sayyid qa bin Tariq Al Said, adviser to His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said. Other guests at the function included members of the Omani Royal Family, ministers, senior Omani officials, business leaders, diplomatic corps and representatives of the British and Commonwealth communities.

The entire house was decorated with pictures of the Queen's 2010 visit to Oman and her ties with His Majesty the Sultan.
Historical pictures depicting the Queen's coronation, the silver Jubilee celebration in 1977 and the Golden Jubilee celebration of the Queen in 2002 were also displayed in the background.

In his speech, the British ambassador described about the Queen's selfless public service over 60 years in a world which has changed beyond recognition during her reign and the importance of Commonwealth. He referred to the unique strength of British-Omani relations and of the extraordinary achievements of Oman during His Majesty the Sultan's 41-year rule.

A notable part of the event was the awarding of an Honorary MBE (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) to the British Embassy's Press and Public Affairs Officer Majdi Fawzi, in recognition of his service. An MBE is awarded to a person for sustained service or for contributions which have a positive impact on the society. Majdi joined the British embassy in 1992 and since then he has worked on many important positions. He is now the senior-most member of the locally engaged staff of the embassy.

On receiving the award, Majdi said: "I feel honoured and humbled to receive this award. I would like to thank all my colleagues for their support and I am very pleased to be recognised in this way.- The ambassador also congratulated Majdi for his outstanding service that has been recognised by the Her Majesty.

The Queen's Diamond Jubilee marks 60 years since her accession in 1952. Celebrations in the UK and around the world have been extensive. The official programme took place at Windsor between May 10 and 13 in which Royal Horse Show was organised featuring a large contingent from Oman. Over 1,000 boats participated in the Thames Pageant and a network of beacons was lighted throughout the UK and the Commonwealth. A concert at Buckingham Palace and a service of Thanksgiving at St. Paul's Cathedral were also part of the event.

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Source: Timesofoman.com

Public Prosecution Warns; No indulging in 'offensive writing' and 'inciting' others

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Today's News: Public Prosecution issued a statement yesterday concerning the recent 'growth of offensive writing' 'under the pretext of free expression' which will result in legal action against those perpetrating such speech or those assisting them 'through any means.' See text below.

Muscat daily


The Public Prosecution warned in a statement on Monday that it will take legal action against those found indulging in 'offensive writing' and 'inciting' others through various media, including social networking websites.
“The Public Prosecution recently noticed the growth of offensive writing and inciting calls by some individuals under the pretext of free expression of opinion,” the statement said.
“This is a blatant violation of the sanctity of personal life of individuals... It has been noticed that rumours and provoking others to carry out negative acts that may eventually harm the homeland,
individuals and national interests are growing.”
The statement added that such acts are contrary to the values, traditions and morals 'that are deeply integrated in the Omani society'.

“Moreover, they are legally criminalised regardless of the audio, print, visual, telecommunications and IT means used... including e-forums and social networking websites,” the statement said.

“Henceforth, the Public Prosecution advises all citizens and residents that it will take the necessary legal actions against perpetrators of such statements or acts, as well as those who promote or provoke or assist them through any means.

لادعاء العام.. سنتخذ كافة الإجراءات القانونية ضد من يقوم بالكتابات المسيئة والدعوات التحريضية
مسقط - ش

أصدر الادعاء العام أمس بيانا جاء فيه: لقد تلاحظ للادعاء العام في الآونة الأخيرة تزايد وتيرة الكتابات المسيئة والدعوات التحريضية التي تصدر من بعض الأشخاص بحجة حرية التعبير عن الرأي، في حين أن ذلك يمثل اعتداء صارخا على حرمة الحياة الخاصة للأفراد، والتعدي عليهم بالسب والقذف، سواء كان ذلك في شخوصهم أو بمناسبة وظائفهم، مع تنامي إطلاق الشائعات والتحريض على القيام بتصرفات سلبية تضر في نهاية المطاف بالوطن والمواطنين والمصالح الوطنية.

وفي الوقت الذي تعد فيه مثل هذه الأقوال والأفعال خروجا على التعاليم الدينية الرفيعة والأعراف العريقة والأخلاق النبيلة التي تأصلت في المجتمع العماني وتربى عليها أبناؤه، فإنها تشكل وقائع تتنافى مع النظام العام والآداب، كما أنها مجرمة قانونا أيا كانت الوسيلة التي تستخدم لهذا الغرض مرئية كانت أو مقروئة أو مسموعة أو عبر وسائل الاتصالات وتقنية المعلومات بما فيها المنتديات الإلكترونية ومواقع التواصل الاجتماعي.

ولذلك يؤكد الادعاء العام لكافة المواطنين والمقيمين بأنه سيتخذ كافة الإجراءات القانونية المناسبة ضد كل من يقوم بمثل تلك الأقوال والأفعال أو يروجها أو يحرض أو يساعد عليها بأي شكل من الأشكال.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Football: 'Too hot to play' Oman vs Australia World Cup Qualifier

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Oman is scheduled to play Australia next Friday, June 8 in Muscat in a World Cup qualifier match. But, the Australian coach has said it's too hot to play according to soccer news:

'Australia coach Holger Osieck has slammed FIFA for scheduling the Socceroos’ away World Cup qualifier against Oman in the late afternoon, fearing the effects of extreme heat on his players.

FIFA has listed the kick-off for the June 8 qualifier at 5 p.m. local time in Muscat, where temperatures regularly soar above 40C. “We are working on it and I think it’s unacceptable to play that time of the year,” Osieck said.'

The Oman Football Association is getting ready for kick-off. According to the website, they have posted the following information which I have re-posted below in regard to the match and obtaining tickets.

On a different note, Oman faced Japan today in another WC qualifier but suffered a 0-3 loss. For those who track live football scores, I have found this site to be useful: http://www.livescores.com/

Update: Game results from Jun 8 | 2012: Final Score 0 - 0, Oman v Australia

Oman Football Association Websites:
http://www.ofa.om and http://www.ofa.om/worldcup/en/
Getting Your Tickets – Australia at Oman
There are six days to go until one of the biggest home matches in Oman football history – Australia at Oman in Fourth Round World Cup qualifying action – and the OFA are looking at specifc aspects of the match-day experience each day as the lead in to the game. We want to make sure that all supporters have as much information about the games as possible.
Today we’ll take a look at how to get your ticket to the big match, both in advance or on the day itself.
Currently tickets are on sale at Shell Stations and Costa Coffee stores across Muscat and Oman – priced at just 2 OMR. By buying early – you will save yourself having to buy on the day of the game – where there are likely to be bigger queues.
ON approaching the stadium from the main road – the two main banks of turnstiles will be in front of you. In the car park between the road and the stadium there will be two ticket hubs – with tickets sales staff available to sell the 2 OMR tickets. The ticket hubs will be branded, and they will surround one of the trees in the car park, so they should be easy to find. Simply approach the seller and buy your ticket.

Omani goalkeeper: Ali Al Habsi

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Recent News about PDO Strike and Detention of Three Activists

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Last week staff from PDO contractors went on 'strike' demanding better benefits. Technically, it is illegal to strike as there is no organised labor in the Sultanate. Last Thursday, three activists who stood with the PDO demonstrators were detained and no one has been able see them since. Today, there was news of a small band of protesters rallying in Muscat for their release. 

It is reported that the situation is calming down and most workers reportedly have returned to work and talks are in progress. Apparently, members of the Shura Council went out on their own accord in a non-official capacity to meet with workers on the oil fields to help resolve the situation. 

Since last year's protests, the government has been working hard to address some of the issues and has implemented some changes including but not limited to: the shuffling and sacking of Ministers, separating the Public Prosecution from ROP, giving the Shura Council more legislative powers and controls, and changing wilayets into regional governorates that will have elected Municipal Councils tasked with providing services at a local level.

The government also provided new jobs in the public sector and unemployment benefits. The Sultanate is a peaceful place and the protests and demonstrations are unique and quite different when compared to other nations with violent uprisings such as Yemen and Bahrain, and, in my opinion, not in the same category. However, the representation is sometimes muddled in the media abroad. 

Some recent news articles:

Rights activists held over oil field strike in Oman

Former Omani volleyball player Habiba Al Hinai and two others detained by security forces
  • Staff Report
  • Published: 13:08 June 1, 2012
  • Gulf News
Dubai Three activists were detained from Fahoud oil fields on Thursday for visiting the site to show solidarity with the striking workers from contracting companies, working for two oil companies in the country.
Former Oman volleyball player Habiba Al Hinai, Sohar activist Esmail Al Muqbali and Yaqoub Al Kharusi were held by security forces, according to a rights group in Oman.
The three had gone to support the striking Omanis, who are working for Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) and Oxy Oman contractors.
The workers are on strike for more than a week demanding better wages, risk allowance and provision for pension.
The strike has been termed illegal and workers have been asked to report back by around nine contracting companies. The workers have been warned they could risk losing jobs if they continue the strike.
Some of the Shura members and prominent citizens have tried to intervene.
According to a Facebook post by an activist, the last contact with Esmail Al Muqbali was on Thursday morning.
Esmail Al Muqbali, Habiba Al Hinai and Yaqoub Al Kharusi are among some activists who formed an independent human rights body. Oman already has a Human Rights Commission.

Oman’s Shura Council to discuss labour unrest tomorrow

Striking oilfield workers agree to resume work with immediate effect, say council members
  • Staff Report
  • Published: 16:33 June 1, 2012
  • Gulf News

Muscat Representatives of Oman’s elected Shura Council have announced an end to the weeklong strike by Omani oilfield workers that had hobbled operations across much of the country’s oil belt.
Salim Bin Ali Al Ka’abi, Deputy Chairman of the Council, who led a mission to negotiate an end to one of the worst labour crises to hit the Sultanate’s critical oil industry, said on Thursday the striking workers had agreed to resume work with immediate effect.
In a statement to the official Oman News Agency (ONA), Al Ka’abi said many of the protesting workers — primarily unskilled Omani employees of private contractors providing oilfield services to a number of oil companies — had returned to their respective workplaces on Wednesday while others would return tomorrow after the weekend break.
Emergency session
Al Ka’abi also said the Shura Council would convene in emergency session tomorrow to discuss the crisis as well as the workers’ demands. The Minister of Oil and Gas and his colleagues, as well as the head of the country’s largest oil producer, Petroleum Development Oman (PDO), and other major oilfield companies and contractors will attend.
The protesters, numbering several hundred Omanis working primarily as bus drivers and helpers, were demanding pay increases, medical insurance, a hike in their social insurance, and a special ‘risk’ allowance to compensate for alleged ‘hazardous workplace exposure’.
No centralised leadership
It was not clear if the pledge to end the protest covered all of the striking workers who hailed from different contractors and subcontractors and lacked a centralised protest leadership. This disparate nature of the protest had forced negotiators to travel from one oilfield location to the next to confer with different groups of striking workers.
Oil output had fallen marginally during the weeklong crisis, PDO’s managing director Raoul Restucci revealed late last week.
Muscat Daily


Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) is striving to bring the industrial dispute with its contracting staff, which began last Thursday, to a speedy resolution by working closely with the government, Majlis A'Shura, Royal Oman Police, contractors, and other authorities.

A release stated that operations at Qarn Alam have resumed and further talks are taking place at Fahud.

Raoul Restucci, managing director, PDO, said, “We are striving to  resolve this dispute legally and fairly as soon as possible.”

The company, however, refutes the allegations that it has been trying to end this matter by denying vital supplies to the facilities affected.

PDO said it was doing its utmost to protect the welfare and safety of its staff and contracting personnel. Restucci added, “The unfortunate fact of the matter is that those who have mounted this illegal strike have been blocking the delivery of water, diesel and preventing others from going about their daily business.”

PDO stated the disruption has reduced oil production, but, “thanks to the non-striking contractors staff, the volume lost so far has been small,” Restucci said. He further thanked Majlis A'Shura for the exhaustive efforts they have made to conclude this matter.”

Three human rights activists ‘detained’
Cairo, Egypt - Cairo based Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) has issued a press release calling for the release of what it claimed were three human rights activists, Habiba al Hinai, Ismail Muqbali and Yacoub Kharousi. ANHRI said in a release that the trio were detained on May 31 while on their way to Fahud to meet workers who were on strike.
Times of Oman

Protestors demand release of activists in Oman

June 02, 2012

Muscat: Members of 'Humanitarian Initiative for Human Rights in Oman', a newly-formed community body working on human rights issues in Oman, organised a sit-in opposite the Ministries District in Al Khuwair, yesterday.

They were protesting against alleged human rights violations and were demanding the "release- of former Oman volleyball player Habiba Al Hinai, Sohar activist Esmail Al Muqbali, and Yaqoub Al Kharusi, who are all allegedly "missing- since Thursday.

According to the activists, Habiba, Esmail and Yaqoub were "detained- from near the Fahoud oilfields on Thursday. They had visited the oilfields to show solidarity with the striking workers.

"On Thursday, we were aware that all the three had gone to the Fahoud oilfields to express their solidarity with the striking workers,- Khalfan, a member of Humanitarian Initiative for Human Rights in Oman, told Times of Oman.

"But after they made their visit, we heard they were summoned by the police. Their cellphones were switched off after 12pm and we lost contact with them. Till now we don't know where they are. Some say they are being brought to the police station in Qurum. But even though we went there with the lawyer, we were not allowed to meet them. So we decided to go for public protest against this 'unlawful arrest',- Khalfan added.

'No news'
The national oilfield workers were on strike for more than a week demanding better wages, health insurance coverage, risk allowance and a provision for pension.

"The three activists went to the oilfields after hearing that some of the facilities allowed for the workers were withdrawn. There were reports of power cuts in the camps as the workers were continuing their strike. They only went to check whether it was true or not. But there is no news after they left the camp,- Khalfan pointed out.

However, Attorney General Hassan Al Hilal said in a statement that officials from the Public Prosecution had met the activists who had gathered in Al Khuwair.

"Officials have heard the protesters' demands and have assured to provide a lawyer for them,- Hilal added.

Meanwhile, the strikes at the oilfields were called off on Thursday evening and the workers have returned to work. On Thursday, representatives of the Shura Council had announced an end to the week-long strike by Omani oilfield workers.

Salim bin Ali Al Ka'abi, Deputy Chairman of the Council, who led a mission to negotiate an end to the crisis, said on Thursday that the striking workers had agreed to resume work with immediate effect.

The Shura team that went to resolve the strike said they had no pressure in tackling the issue.
"We stood for the workers' rights,- they said.

There were also reports that a special Shura team had held talks with the officials of the Ministry of Manpower, Ministry of Oil and Gas, Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) and the sub-contracting companies to discuss the issues related to the oilfield workers' strike.

According to the human rights activists, a similar strike was held in front of the Majlis Al Shura building yesterday to protest against the alleged "removal- of some of the oilfield workers who went on strike.

"More than two dozen activists held a sit-in in front of the Shura building to protest against the alleged 'removal' of the workers,- Khalfan said, while adding that they would continue their fight against human rights violations in the Sultanate.

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