Tuesday, February 1, 2011

UAE's Omani Spies arrested: official news of arrests released by ONA, denied by UAE

As noted in comments on the previous post, Oman's Official news agency ONA issued the following short press release yesterday about busting a ring of UAE spys (also reported here on Muscat Confidential in November last year when at the time it was gossiped that the spys' target was the new port of Duqm):

Official Security Source/ Spy Network Unveils
Muscat, Jan 30 (ONA) --- An official security source has announced that as a result of the sincere efforts exerted by the faithful sons of this country, the security apparatuses have discovered a spy network affiliated to the State Security Service in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) targeting the regime in Oman and the mechanism of the governmental and military work. The convicted will be presented before the trial according to the procedures followed in this regard.

May Allah the Almighty protect His Majesty the Sultan and our beloved country against all harms.
--- Ends/AH/KH

The UAE responded that it was all news to them, using the classic Shaggy 'it wasn't me' defence. The story was quickly repeated by the wire services and BBC Middle East etc.

In an totally unconfirmed rumour, I'm told the Omani arrested allegedly include:
the ex-head of the air force (left the post about two years ago)
the head of internal security [!!?? UD]
HM's personal driver

If the above list is true, that's HUGE news: the Oman's Head of ISS a UAE spy?? Surely not.

As an interesting aside, an anon commenter on the earlier post on this topic suggested that the tip off leading to the arrests came from the Iranians...


  1. hi,
    u r not a totally sleeping dragon... though u fetch some treasures for ur employer..u do care care about the ordinary Omani's also

  2. its nice to know though u fetch some treasures for your employer..u do care about the local crowd..who r less fortunate not by opportunities ..but...by realizing...it..

  3. The ex-high flyer is hopefully not enjoying life under the 'Fatimids'

  4. A former senior head of security who served in Dhofar for many years.


  5. UD

    And here's me thinking that the Head of ISS and the ex-RAFO head rumour was just funny talk from a friend of mine.

    Further squirreling has indeed found that rumour to be very solid indeed.

    One wonders.....


  6. I know one of them. His name is Abdullah, and I'd totally write his family name but no one else from his tribe is a spy and what not and alot of guys where he's from have the exact same name: Abdullah ____ _____ [and insert tribe name].

    We [as in his village] never liked him anyways and were not at all surprised to find out he was a spy.

    He certainly wasn't the head of internal security but he worked for them. I'll post the whole story on the OPNO blog I guess, since eventually it will get out.

    They should give me his passport, serriously.

  7. Thanks for the tip off, UD.
    Unless there was something serious Oman will not issue a press communication.
    For the ordinary guys end result is a trip to Dubai for Omanis especially via road will become more difficult in the coming days.

  8. Nice reporting Jacko!

  9. Well if it indeed came from Iran. Its probably related to the nuclear issue. Oman seems to be playing a very unique role in negotiations between certain parties. ;)

  10. they spied on the members of HM's entourage that were too close to iran

  11. It was not Abu Dhabi Crown Princes outfit. It was Emirati State Intel apparatus - headed by Hazza Bin Zayed. As UAE was strictly enforcing the sanctions on Iran, the fallout of the trade was being gained by Oman (this was one reason). And you are right about HM Sultan Qaboos not travelling to Abu Dhabi for GCC summit, it was due to this reason.

    Eye on Middle East

  12. Omani Princess is the person's name Abdullah Al K*****i? He was high up in ISS right?

    I'll write about what I know in the blog. Perhaps we can work together on this?

    Eye on the Middle East blog

  13. A diplomatic spat between two neighbours, Egypt on the brink with Mubarak (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-12345656) likely on his way out and some Omani school teachers on a strike against the move to increase their pension contributions (http://www.muscatdaily.com/index.php/muscatdaily/Archive/Stories-Files/Oman-school-teachers-go-on-strike).
    Heavy rains expected on Thursday
    An interesting week for Muscat residents. Wonder what other excitements await us over the weekend.


  14. You can read more about the Oman - UAE spy issue at:



  15. Eye On the Middle East: Abdullah was decently high up, but not on the top if that helps. But there were more than 5 traitors so there could be more than one Abdullah ;) who works for Internal Security.

  16. From Khaleej Times 26 Feb 2008

    His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said yesterday named a new chief for the Internal Security Service (ISS). He appointed Maj-Gen. Abdullah bin Rashid bin Abdullah Al Kalbani to the post after promoting him to the rank of Lieutenant-General through a decree.


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