Viewing cable 05MUSCAT1043
Title: MEDIA REACTION: THE OIC, CONCERTS, AND LABOR LAWS

IdentifierCreatedReleasedClassificationOrigin
05MUSCAT10432005-07-04 11:15:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Muscat
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS MUSCAT 001043 
 
SIPDIS 
 
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E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: KPAO KMDR OIIP ELAB EAID MU
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: THE OIC, CONCERTS, AND LABOR LAWS 
 
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A (Permanent) Seat At The Table 
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¶1. The privately owned Arabic-language daily "Al-Watan" published 
an editorial on June 29 entitled "Marginalization Is The Cause Of 
Misunderstandings": 
 
"The recently concluded meeting of the Organization of Islamic 
Conference (OIC) in Yemen was a useful forum to address common 
interests and concerns, and the participation of the Sultanate of 
Oman shows our eagerness to contribute to a unified vision among 
our sister countries.  This vision respects the interests of 
other countries - despite the fact that many international 
observers now paint all Islamic countries with the same brush of 
terrorism.  Arabs and Muslims need to resist this type of 
marginalization.  One possible solution would be to grant a 
permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council to an 
Islamic country.  The OIC meeting focused on this point." 
 
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Protest Song 
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¶2. "Al-Watan" also carried an editorial on July 3 under the 
headline "Music Concerts Don't Feed the Hungry": 
 
"The world faces many man-made catastrophes: poverty, the 
imbalance of trade, the launching of illegitimate wars, a 
flourishing weapons trade, and environmental pollution.  These 
issues are not going to be solved by singing and dancing.  The 
"Live 8" concert will not be the solution for the world's pain 
and suffering.  We call again upon the leaders of wealthy nations 
to make courageous decisions to alleviate global problems.  If 
the debts of all poor countries were cancelled, it would be 
better for the development of the so-called Third World." 
 
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Belaboring The Point 
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¶3. The July 4 edition of "Al-Watan" featured an editorial 
entitled "Adhering To Legitimacy Is The Omani Way": 
 
"The concept of labor must be understood as a contract between 
two parties: the employer and the employee.  This type of 
contract exists in every economic sector, in both the public and 
private spheres.  As long as the two parties agree on the 
contract, both should abide by the laws and conditions of the 
contract....  Likewise, member states of the United Nations have 
committed themselves to an international labor law; forcing 
people to work against their will is a type of human slavery that 
is forbidden by all international agreements.  The UN also 
prohibits employing underage children.  Oman has always adhered 
to international labor laws, illustrating that obeying the law is 
part of our culture, and caring for vulnerable citizens is 
consistent with our values."  (Note: Sultan Qaboos issued a royal 
decree on July 3 ratifying the International Labor Organization 
conventions dealing with forced labor and a minimum employment 
age.  End note.) 
 
BALTIMORE