U.S. Security Cooperation With Oman

Fact Sheet
Bureau of Political-Military Affairs
March 1, 2016

Oman is a vital U.S. partner on a wide range of regional, political, and security issues facing the Middle East. The country plays a key role in the Gulf Cooperation Council’s counterterrorism efforts to secure peace in the region. As follow up to the May 14, 2015 Camp David summit, we are working with the GCC to increase cooperation on maritime security, military preparedness, arms transfers, cybersecurity, and counterterrorism. The United States is committed to helping Oman improve its security and enabling Oman to work with its GCC partners to address the complex and dynamic security challenges facing the Middle East.

  • The United States and Oman first concluded a treaty in 1833 in support of friendship and navigation, making this one of the oldest partnerships the United States has with a Middle Eastern country. The two countries established official diplomatic relations in 1972, signed a military cooperation agreement in 1980, and revised and renewed that agreement in 2010. Revisions to the original agreement provide the U.S. with access to a variety of ports and airfields.
  • The United States and Oman work closely to ensure freedom of navigation along a key naval chokepoint on the Strait of Hormuz. They also cooperate on counter-piracy, preventing weapons and narcotics trafficking, and preventing other illegal activities. In FY2015, the United States will provide more than $5 million in Foreign Military Financing and International Military Education and Training assistance.
  • Through Foreign Military Sales, the United States is providing Oman with two squadrons of F-16 A/C advanced fighter aircraft, three C-130J cargo aircraft, and F-16 A/C weapon systems — including AIM-120C-7 advanced medium range air-to-air missiles, AIM-9X Sidewinder missile, and the AGM-84 Harpoon missile; 400 Javelin guided missiles and TOW-2B missile systems; and 20 high mobility multi-purpose wheeled vehicles.

    • These defense sales will provide Oman with the ability to defend itself against regional threats and provide opportunities to increase interoperability with U.S. forces and other allies.
    • The F-16 weapons systems and Sidewinder missiles will improve the Royal Air Force of Oman’s ability to support its developing F-16 fleet. The Javelin anti-tank weapon system and TOW-2B anti-tank weapon systems will enable Oman to better defend against an armored attack against the population base or to seize crucial oil and natural gas infrastructure.
    • The additional weapon systems will also serve as a deterrent to potential threats from regional unmanned aerial vehicles, cruise missiles, and fighter aircraft, enhancing Oman’s homeland defense and support for regional security.