VRT TV news report about Sultan’s stay in Leuven appears on Omani news site

A report that was broadcast in the VRT’s 7pm television news on Friday has been picked up by a news website in the Gulf state of Oman. The report about the Sultan of Oman’s stay in the Flemish Brabant city of Leuven for medical treatment features (albeit in a slightly modified form and with Arabic subtitles) in an article published on the Qaboos website. Elsewhere, little if anything has been reported in the Omani media about the sultan’s stay in Belgium.    

The report in Friday 7pm television news reports that the Sultan of Oman had arrived in Leuven and that he had booked all of the city’s The Fourth Hotel for himself and his entourage.

However, our colleague’s observation that other guests that were staying in the hotel had been forced move to another hotel was not translated into Arabic.   

Extra security measures

On Tuesday morning the Local and Federal Police Services met with the Mayor of Leuven Mohamed Ridouani, a delegation of the Sultan of Oman’s staff, staff from the The Fourth Hotel and the private taxi company that is working for the Sultan to discuss extra security measures.

A number of standard measures are put into place whenever a foreign Head of State visits. The Leuven Local Police Service spokesman Marc Vranckx told VRT News that “We have a good concrete protocol in place concerning the security of the delegation for as long as they are here in Leuven”.

"It is a long visit of at least six weeks. There is quite a bit needed to ensure everything runs smoothly, but I am not at liberty to discuss specific measures”. 

Treatment at Leuven University Hospital

The Sultan of Oman is currently undergoing treatment at Leuven University Hospital. There too special security measures applicable when a Head of State is being treated are in force.  

Nevertheless, the Sultan’s presence at the hospital will not impact its day to day running. No wards have been closed and no other patients’ treatment has been cancelled.  

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