Oman, UAE sign agreement ending border feud

Sunday, October 12, 2003

ABU DHABI Oman and the United Arab Emirates have concluded an agreement on their border in another step toward ending long-running feuds between Gulf Cooperation Council states.

Oman and the UAE exchanged documents on the border agreement in what officials from both countries said was a step meant to increase security cooperation between Abu Dhabi and Muscat. The documents exchanged on Saturday delineate the UAE-Omani border from east of Al Aqeedat to Al Daar on the Gulf coast, Middle East Newsline reported.

"We are all proud of it," UAE Deputy Prime Minister Hamdan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan said in Sohar, located 300 kilometers north of the Omani capital of Muscat. "Today is a historic day for the UAE and Oman."

The border agreement was completed in June 2002 when Oman's Sultan Qaboos met UAE President Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi. Officials said the exchange of the border documents formally ends the demarcation process.

The border was delineated from Umm Zamoul to Al Daar in the north. Hamdan said the border accord will pave the way for cooperation in a range of fields.

Over the last three years, several GCC states have resolved their sometimes bloody border disputes. They include border feuds between Bahrain and Qatar as well as Saudi Arabia and its neighbors.

GCC states still engage in confrontations over their territorial waters.

Over the last week, Qatar's Coast Guard seized 18 Bahraini fishing boats along the martime border between the two countries. So far, Doha's Coast Guard was said to have captured 36 Bahraini vessels.

The border between Bahrain and Qatar was resolved in 2001 at the International Court of Justice.

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