JAPANESE PREMIER ABE WRAPS UP GULF TOUR IN OMAN Jan 15, 2020 0 655 12345 Muscat, Jan 14, 2020 (AFP) -Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met Oman''s new sultan on Tuesday on his last leg of a Gulf tour amid regional tensions after the US killing of a top Iranian general. Abe and Haitham bin Tareq, who took office last week following the death of long-serving Sultan Qaboos, agreed to cooperate for regional stability and to develop their bilateral relations, said a Japanese foreign ministry statement. Abe also offered his condolences for the death of Sultan Qaboos, who died Friday aged 79. Under Qaboos, Muscat acted as a regional and international go-between, including during a discreet dialogue between Tehran and Washington that led to a 2015 deal over Iran''s nuclear programme. US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the accord in 2018, reimposing sanctions and a campaign of "maximum pressure" against Tehran. Abe''s Gulf trip had initially been thrown into doubt after the US on January 3 killed the head of Iran''s Quds Force, Qasem Soleimani. Iran responded by launching a barrage of missiles at bases hosting American troops in Iraq. But the Japanese premier''s five-day tour went ahead, including talks with top officials in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. In a meeting Sunday with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Abe warned that military conflict with Iran would have an impact on global peace and stability, said Japanese foreign ministry spokesman Masato Ohtaka. Tokyo has walked a fine line in balancing its key alliance with Washington and its longstanding relations and interests with Tehran. RELATED ARTICLES Tens of thousands Filipinos in limbo as volcano could spew lava, ash for weeks Jan 15, 2020 0 757 Over 130 dead as severe weather hits Pakistan, Afghanistan Jan 15, 2020 0 1091 House to vote today to send Impeachment case to Senate, says Pelosi Jan 15, 2020 0 1111 Malaysia drops sex assault probe of PM-in-waiting Anwar Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia’s leader-in-waiting Anwar Ibrahim will not face charges over claims he sexually assaulted a male former aide, prosecutors said on Tuesday, the latest such scandal to tarnish the veteran .. Huge sinkhole swallows bus, kills nine in China Beijing: An enormous sinkhole swallowed a bus and pedestrians in northwest China, sparking an explosion and killing nine people, state media said on Tuesday. Footage showed people at a bus stop running from the .. US slaps sanctions over North Korea overseas workers Washington: The United States on Tuesday imposed sanctions on two companies for exploiting North Korean overseas labour after a UN deadline to return workers who bring vital revenue to the regime. The Treasury .. Kerala challenges Indian citizenship law in top court DPA New Delhi India’s southern state of Kerala on Tuesday became the first in the country to legally challenge a new citizenship law that has sparked nationwide protests. The Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) 2019 is a .. Ireland to hold early election on Feb 8, says PM Varadkar Dublin: Ireland will go to the polls next month in an early general poll, Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said on Tuesday, as he seeks to capitalise on a successful Brexit deal and restored power-sharing in Northern Ireland. .. Russia hacked company key to Trump’s impeachment, says security firm Washington: Russia’s military spy agency hacked a Ukrainian gas company linked to the impeachment of US President Donald Trump, a California-based cybersecurity company said on Tuesday. Starting in November, .. US sanctions lead to shortages of cooking gas in Cuba Havana: Cuba is suffering from shortages of cooking gas due to US sanctions on the island, the state oil company Union Cubapetroleo has said. Sanctions that were announced in November on the state energy company .. Microsoft CEO critical of new India citizenship law New Delhi: Microsoft’s chief executive hit out at the government of his native India and joined criticism of a new citizenship law. Speaking at an event in New York, Microsoft boss Satya Nadella implied the law could stop a ..