OPINION

July 23, 1957

UPRISING IN OMAN: London, 20 – There are reports from the island of Bahrain in the Persian Gulf that Arab mercenary troops led by British officers are fighting Arabs rebelling against British sovereignty in the region of Oman, which the British have ceded to the Sultan of Muscat. The tribesmen of Oman, numbering some 1,500, attacked and occupied the town of Nizwa on the orders of the imam of Oman, Sheikh Ghalib bin Ali. Now the British are preparing air force reinforcements to restore order and the previous status quo. Three years ago the imam of Oman had failed in another attempt to overthrow British rule and was forced to flee to Saudi Arabia. He returned to Oman in recent weeks. It is said that British-led forces have arrested his second-in-command and seized US-made weapons. The town of Nizwa is located in the heart of Oman, 120 miles southeast of the petroleum-rich Buraimi Oasis. The sultan of Oman has asked the British for support on the basis of a bilateral trade, shipping and friendship accord. The mercenaries answer directly to the sultan and have no connection with the British forces. A Foreign Office spokesman said the situation in the protectorate of Oman and the capital, Muscat, continued to be extremely confused.