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Boris Johnson, UK prime minister with Haitham bin Tariq, Oman's sultan, during their bilateral meeting inside number 10 Downing Street in London, on Thursday. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Dubai: Sultan Haitham bin Tarik on Thursday met with Boris Johnson, British Prime Minister, at 10 Downing Street in London.

The meeting reviewed historic relations binding the two countries and means of promoting them in various spheres to serve the joint interests of the Omani and British peoples.

The two sides also exchanged views on current international issues of common concern.

The meeting was attended from the Omani side by Sayyid Shihab bin Tarik Al Said, Deputy Prime Minister for Defence Affairs, Sayyid Theyazin bin Haitham Al Said, Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Gen. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Nu’amani, Minister of the Royal Office, Sayyid Badr bin Hamad Al Busaidi, Foreign Minister and Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah Al Hinai, Ambassador of the Sultanate of Oman to the UK. On the UK side, David Quarrey, the Prime Minister’s International Affairs Adviser, Bill Murray, UK Ambassador to Oman and a number of officials were also present.

On Wednesday, Queen Elizabeth II made a rare public appearance, hosting Sultan Haitham and his wife, Sayyida Ahad bint Abdullah, at Windsor Castle.

The 95-year-old monarch has cut back on her engagements since an overnight hospital stay in October that raised fears for her health and prompted doctors to advise rest.

Buckingham Palace confirmed in a statement that she met the Sultan, 66, at her historic residence west of London, without giving further details.

The two heads of state, and Sayyida Ahad, 51, were pictured smiling and shaking hands.

The Gulf state ruler, a former culture and heritage minister who studied at Oxford University, came to power after the death of his cousin, Sultan Qaboos, last year. He had been the Arab world’s longest-serving ruler.

Queen Elizabeth II next year marks her 70th year on the throne - a record in British history.

The monarch moved to Windsor in March last year and effectively self-isolated from the pandemic with her husband, Prince Philip, because of their age.

Philip died aged 99 in April after a month-long stay in hospital with a heart condition. The Queen resumed duties after his funeral and the official mourning period.

But since her hospital stay, at which she underwent unspecified tests, she has only been undertaking what palace officials said were light duties, including online meetings.

Britain is facing a new wave of infections from the Omicron strain of the virus, prompting the government to impose new restrictions and warnings about social gatherings.

The Queen was last year forced to cancel her traditional pre-Christmas family party last year because of strict rules on social distancing and indoor mixing.

But British media reported she was still considering whether to hold the event this year, bringing together her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.