Oman Air apologizes for using “Persian Gulf” label on maps

After it found itself in hot water with internet users, after a wave of rage over labeling the Gulf ‘Persian’ instead of ‘Arabian’ on its planes’s maps, State carrier Oman Air has apologized for inflight maps that labeled the Gulf as the “Persian Gulf”, said Reuters.

In an official statement released on Saturday, Oman Air described the map as a mistake, noting the planes had been leased from Kenya Airways. The Omani airline has asked Panasonic, which maintains its inflight entertainment systems, to change the map software without delay, Oman Air said, and “crew have been notified to disable the disturbing maps.”

In a sign of the strains between Gulf Arab countries and regional rival Iran, Oman has sought to distance itself from the squabbles, but being an Arab nation, seems to have forced its hand regarding this issue.

The naming of the strategic oil export artery is a perennial bone of contention between Iran and its Arab neighbors, as Arab countries have for decades called it the “Arabian Gulf.”

Foreign language descriptions can offend either party if they use one name or the other, or sometimes if they avoid an adjective altogether.

The Gulf is home to the Bahrain-based U.S. Fifth Fleet, and Iran and the United Arab Emirates are embroiled in a territorial dispute over the sovereignty of three islands in the waterway.