Author Topic: Jordan:  (Read 22158 times)

Crafty_Dog

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Jordan Times: trade issues with Turkey
« Reply #50 on: April 02, 2018, 09:07:59 AM »
second post


FTA with Turkey to resume ‘under certain conditions'

By Mohammad Ghazal - Apr 02,2018 - Last updated at Apr 02,2018
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AMMAN — Jordan is willing to reactivate the free trade agreement with Turkey, which was suspended last month, if Turkey agrees to meet certain conditions, the government said on Sunday.

Officials have recently held a meeting with a Turkish government delegation to look into solutions following the suspension decision, Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply Yarub Qudah told The Jordan Times on Sunday.

The terms, he said, include the Turkish side’s consent to protection measures Jordan will design to protect local industries, increasing Turkish technical assistance to Jordan as stipulated by the FTA and reconsidering the "strict" rules of origin specifications applied by Turkey.

Jordan wants Ankara to adopt the same relaxed rules of origin Jordan enjoys under a deal signed with the EU, the minister said.

“We believe that these measures can ensure justice for both sides and will help protect our industries and make it easier for Jordanian products to enter the Turkish market,” Qudah said.

“The deal was suspended after it was thoroughly re-assessed and proved to have a significant negative impact on the local industries, tilting the trade balance significantly in favour of Turkey,” he continued.

Qudah said the government has no objections against the reactivation of the deal with Turkey if the latter meets the conditions set in this regard.

“We put no obstacles at all and we are open to suggestions to help achieve national interests,” the minister stressed.

Last month’s decision to suspend the bilateral deal was welcomed by industrialists but slammed by traders.

At the time, government officials said that Turkey did not transfer know-how to improve national industries as agreed upon in  the deal, adding that Turkey’s exports to Jordan sharply rocketed after the deal went into effect.

Before 2011, Turkey’s annual exports to Jordan, excluding oil, reached $23 million, with customs fees being collected; after the deal went into effect, Turkish exports to Jordan, excluding oil, reached around $135 million annually, with nothing being disbursed in customs fees to the Treasury, according to the Amman Chamber of Commerce.

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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #51 on: April 16, 2018, 12:42:57 PM »

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Stratfor: Syrian Refugees and Social Cohesion in Jordan
« Reply #52 on: April 26, 2018, 07:44:36 AM »
Syrian Refugees and Social Cohesion in Jordan
A Syrian refugee family sit in a home in Jordan where a Norwegian nongovernmental organization has arranged for them to stay.
(KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP/Getty Images)

Partner Perspectives are a collection of high-quality analyses and commentary produced by organizations around the world. Though Stratfor does not necessarily endorse the views expressed here — and may even disagree with them — we respect the rigorous and innovative thought that their unique points of view inspire.


By Dorsey Lockhart and Katrina Barker for the WANA Institute

Social cohesion is a commonly used term in immigration and conflict prevention circles. International organisations, governments, and civil society actors worry about social cohesion where there are large influxes of refugee or other migrant populations. As the Syrian civil war approaches its eighth year, in Jordan — where there are approximately 516,000 registered Syrians refugees living outside of the camps — observers are increasingly concerned with the relationship between these populations and host communities.

Several organisations have sought to measure social cohesion in the Jordanian context. In 2015, the Jordanian NGO Generations for Peace conducted focus groups amongst Jordanian and Syrian parents who had developed perceptions of one another based on contact through their children's schooling. The discussions revealed mixed results with some Jordanian participants expressing resentment towards Syrians as a result of the strain they are perceived to have imposed on the Jordanian state. Others asserted that Syrians should be welcomed in Jordan. Additional sources of tension between the two communities that were noted include increases in rental prices, competition for income generating activities, and overcrowding of public services. [1]

Social cohesion may be conceptualised as a crosscutting issue alongside several welfare indicators such as education, welfare, water, employment and livelihoods, and access to municipal services. The NGO REACH defines social cohesion not only as a function of community relations and individual perceptions but also as a product of access to resources and state services. Between August and September 2014, they conducted focus groups of Syrian refugees across governorates in the North of Jordan. The results of this study suggested mounting tensions on the part of the Jordanian host population, where many workshop participants noted that Syrian refugees were replacing Jordanian and Egyptian workers who had worked in seasonal agriculture jobs. Others suggested that employers prefer Syrians as a result of their willingness to work for lower wages. Thirty-nine per cent of Jordanians surveyed reported having a negative view of Syrian Refugees in their host community, and many Jordanians expressed the belief that Syrian Refugees were benefitting disproportionately from international support while the poorest Jordanians went unnoticed. [2]

Jordan's February 2016 decision to provide limited worker rights to Syrian refugees has drawnwidespread attention from refugee policy-makers and civil society advocates, not only for its provision of access to livelihoods but also for the reason that worker integration has the potential to reduce tensions between employed Syrians and their Jordanian counterparts. While there have been multiple efforts to assess Syrian refugees' intentions to enter the formal labour market, little has been done to gauge how Jordanian workers perceive the policy. In order to gain a cursory understanding of this, in September 2017, the WANA Institute conducted Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) across factories in Amman, Irbid and Mafraq. Participants were Jordanian factory workers — a population that could, in both the present and future — be in direct competition with Syrian workers for factory jobs.

The Syrian Labour Integration Policy's Impact on Social Cohesion: Conclusions from Focus Group Discussions

The FGDs were carried out at factories in Amman, Irbid and Mafraq. Each discussion group included an average total of eight male and female Jordanian workers. Participants were asked to discuss their attitudes towards potential Syrian colleagues, their feelings regarding the rights and assistance that has been afforded to Syrian refugees, and their views regarding Syrian business people and investors' contributions to Jordanian society.
Jordanian Worker Views of Syrian Counterparts

Discussions suggest a range of attitudes towards and perceptions of Syrian workers amongst Jordanian manufacturing workers. Several Jordanian workers described Syrians as easy to work with, emphasizing the cultural similarities between the two groups. Others underscored Syrians' unique skill
sets, particularly with regard to craft occupations such as sewing. Still, others faulted Syrians as 'less reliable' than Jordanian workers, characterizing them as more likely to prioritize their 'rights' above their 'duties.' Jordanian

Worker Views of Labour Integration Policy

These discussions suggested that Jordanian workers demonstrate varying degrees of awareness of Jordan's decision to provide limited working rights to Syrians. When probed on the question of which sectors had been opened to Syrians, some participants highlighted construction and manufacturing, while others claimed that Syrians enjoyed access to all sectors and occupations, without exception.

In a similar vein, Jordanian workers appear to have mixed views regarding the opening of additional sectors and occupations to Syrian workers. While some workers supported further integration, others were strongly of the view that Syrians already benefit from generous assistance packages — sometimes in the area of JOD700 per month (it should be noted that this assumption is false) — which allow them to accept lower salaries and be 'uncommitted to the workplace.'

Recurrent Concerns

Amongst almost all of the Jordanian workers surveyed, there was the consistent belief that Syrian workers appeal to employers because they are willing to work for lower wages. Some participants attributed Syrians' ability to accept low wages to the 'generous' assistance they receive from international organisations. Overall, the perception that Syrian workers are replacing Jordanian workers and exacerbating Jordan's unemployment rate also appears to be widespread.

Workers who have some experience with Syrian business owners or investors appear to be more likely to believe that Syrians have had a positive influence on Jordanian society than workers whose contact has been limited. In general, workers who have not had direct contact with Syrian businesses believe that Syrian investments have created few opportunities; this belief is based on the assumption that 'Syrian companies only hire Syrians.' Workers also appear convinced that Syrian investors will not maintain investments in Jordan when the war ends.

Other Emerging Trends

Focus group participants in Mafraq expressed a more negative view of Syrian workers than focus group participants in Amman and Irbid and presented a darker picture of the impact that the presence of Syrians has had on living conditions. Some workers noted deteriorating working conditions — a change they attributed to the large influx of Syrian refugees. Others suggested that lower wages and worsening labour conditions were putting pressure on Jordanian family structures. Mafraq-based Jordanian workers who participated in the discussions characterized Syrian workers as 'unreliable;' most seemed to associate this with the assistance provided by international organisations and NGOs. The majority consistently rejected the prospect of additional sectors or occupations being opened to Syrians.

Comment and Tentative Conclusions

Research conducted by a range of institutions, including UNHCR, the World Bank, the WANA Institute and various NGOs, has highlighted the low wages and extreme poverty conditions faced by Syrian refugees in Jordan. The widespread resentment of the assistance programmes that are designed to offset this situation is cause for worry; any effort to debunk the misperceptions around these programmes will require thoughtfulness and creativity.

The limited cases in which Jordanian workers have had exposure to Syrian investors suggest that increased exposure to and awareness of Syrian business ventures in Jordan could go a long way towards improving perceptions.

Finally and unsurprisingly, as demonstrated by the FGDs carried out in Mafraq — where Syrian refugees account for approximately 29 per cent of the population [3] — location may be a key determinant in social cohesion: in cities and governorates where the population of Syrian refugees is more dense, host populations may be more prone to negative views and tensions may be greater.

[1] Seeley, Maira; 'Jordanian Hosts and Syrian Refugees: Comparing Perceptions of Social Conflict and Cohesion in Three Host Communities,' Generations for Peace Institute, December 2015, https://www.generationsforpeace.org/wpcontent/uploads/2016/11/OX-2015-MS-Report-02.pdf

[2] REACH, "Understanding Social Cohesion & Resilience in Jordanian Host Communities-April 2014," (Amman: June 2014); https://reliefweb.int/report/jordan/understanding-social-cohesion-and-resilience-jordanian-host-communities-assessment

[3] This figure is based on the February 2018 UNHCR number of registered Syrian refugees residing in Mafraq (157,951) divided by the total population in Mafraq (549,948), as defined by the 2015 GoJ Census.

Crafty_Dog

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GPF: Jordan meets with Iran
« Reply #53 on: May 21, 2018, 11:53:05 AM »
Iran, Jordan: On May 18, the heads of state of Iran and Jordan met for the first time in 15 years. What was this meeting about? Why is it happening now?

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GPF: What instability in Jordan means for the Middle East
« Reply #54 on: June 05, 2018, 09:19:28 AM »
What Instability in Jordan Means for the Middle East
Jun 5, 2018
By Allison Fedirka

For years, Jordan has been a fairly stable country in an unstable region. But this weekend in Jordan was uncharacteristically tense, as thousands of demonstrators took to the streets to protest government austerity measures. Within days of the outbreak of the protests, Prime Minister Hani al-Mulki resigned and King Abdullah II ordered Education Minister Omar al-Razzaz to form a new government. How much does it really matter that a small country like Jordan is experiencing the sort of social unrest that is normal in its chaotic region? Potentially quite a bit.

Jordan has seen far worse macroeconomic conditions before, but the latest protests stem from economic problems that reach far deeper, to the lives and livelihoods of average Jordanians. Jordan is a small country with limited natural resources. It can do little to control the price of imported goods and depends heavily on external financing for economic development and stability. As it has done in the past, the Jordanian government turned to the International Monetary Fund in 2016 for credit to deal with a growing budget deficit and debt. As part of the IMF’s restructuring plan, the government implemented austerity measures that included cutting subsidies on over 150 goods and commodities. Particularly harmful was the removal of subsidies on staple food items and the introduction of a 10 percent tax on agricultural goods that were previously exempt from taxes. Public protests against rising bread prices started six months ago with a handful of unemployed people in isolated locations and evolved into organized demonstrations involving multiple groups and thousands of protesters. The government has tried to alleviate some of the pain related to rising prices with direct cash transfers to low-income individuals, but the issues were structural – and those types of issues don’t go away overnight.

Jordan occupies a strategic location in the Middle East, wedged between Israel and Saudi Arabia, two of the region’s leading powers. To its north and northeast lie Syria and Iraq – the region’s main hot spots that have drawn in regional and global powers like Iran, Turkey, Russia and the United States. Jordan initially was concerned about the crises in Syria and Iraq because of the fear that the Islamic State would spread into Jordan or that the waves of refugees fleeing these countries might reach its borders. Indeed, Jordan is now home to 660,000 Syrian refugees, nearly 7 percent of its total population. But the threat of IS expansion in the Middle East has largely subsided, with the group now relegated to sleeper cells and isolated pockets of territory. Nevertheless, Syria and Iraq still present a host of challenges for countries in the region, and if those countries took a turn for the worse, Jordan would likely be among the first to suffer. For this reason, Jordan’s relative stability matters greatly in the Middle East and beyond.
 
(click to enlarge)

Israel, for example, will undoubtedly keep a close eye on developments in Jordan. It shares its longest border with Jordan, and a majority of Jordanians are of Palestinian origin. Jordan relies heavily on Israel for its national security, and Jordan helps Israel contain potential threats. But Israel is vulnerable at the moment – Israel Defense Forces are on alert due to escalating instability in the West Bank, Gaza, Golan Heights, Sinai Peninsula and Lebanon. Israel becomes increasingly exposed as stability in the region deteriorates and Iranian proxy groups become more active. Israel doesn’t need another conflict erupting along its borders. It will do what it can to keep Jordan stable and prevent a power vacuum from developing there.

The United States also has a strong interest in Jordan, which has long been a reliable military partner for Washington. In the fight against IS, the country served as a critical logistics hub. Its Muwaffaq Salti air base, located near the Syrian and Iraqi borders, was essential in fighter-bomber missions targeting IS territory. The U.S. has about 2,800 troops in Jordan to help train local forces and reportedly has Patriot missiles stationed there as well. It has also invested billions of dollars to secure this relationship, including $3.75 billion in loan guarantees since 2013. In terms of defense, the U.S. co-developed the Jordanian military’s five-year procurement plan, and U.S. law allows for expedited review and an increased value threshold for arms sales to Jordan. In February, the two countries signed their third memorandum of understanding, a deal that will provide Jordan more than $1.27 billion in foreign assistance per year over five years, a 27 percent increase from the previous agreement. Though the pace of operations against the Islamic State has slowed and the U.S. is trying to reduce its military presence in the Middle East, Jordan remains a valuable partner for the U.S., and anything that might compromise this relationship is a threat to U.S. interests. The protests do not rise to this level right now, but Washington will remain vigilant nonetheless.

Then there’s Iran, which has a vested interest in weakening Israel. Tehran has forces in both Syria and Iraq and is trying to expand its influence in the region, particularly through proxy groups. According to Al-Jazeera, this weekend’s protests in Jordan were led in part by a youth movement called Hirak Shababi, which Israeli intelligence accused in 2016 of being directed and funded by Hezbollah, Iran’s longtime proxy in Lebanon. The Israeli Defense Ministry promptly outlawed the group, which it considered a Palestinian umbrella organization. Though Iran has not been directly linked to the group’s operations in Jordan, the possibility must be raised given how it would help further Iranian interests in the region.

The Jordanian monarchy has thus far managed to keep the social unrest in check. It has found ways to make modest changes to the government to show that it is responding to the public backlash. (From May 2016 to March 2018, the Cabinet was reshuffled six times.) Attempts to prepare the public for the subsidy cuts through media campaigns appear to have failed. For now, the social unrest in Jordan has not threatened its core security relationships, but there is no guarantee that this will remain the case. The country still needs a way to address its underlying economic problems in the long term, and Iran’s potential role in fueling the unrest complicates the situation even further. But one thing is certain: Major instability in Jordan would have consequences for the entire Middle East.

Crafty_Dog

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GPFL Jordan seeks $800M line of credit from Japan
« Reply #55 on: June 12, 2018, 11:24:51 PM »


Jordan: Jordan is trying to secure an $800 million credit line from Japan, pending certification from the International Monetary Fund, to begin extending tranches of the line. This comes just after Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait pledged a $2.5 billion aid package to be paid over the next five years. How long has this line been under consideration? What does IMF certification entail? What are Japan’s interests in Jordan?

Crafty_Dog

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Front Page: Riots in Jordan put Gulf States on Edge
« Reply #56 on: June 14, 2018, 07:25:39 AM »
https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/270440/riots-jordan-put-gulf-states-edge-ari-lieberman



The oil-rich Gulf States - Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates - are not known for easily parting with their petro-dollars. But this miserly instinct dissipates when the Sheikhdoms perceive a direct threat to the stability of their respective governments. On Sunday, the three nations led by Riyadh pledged to provide Jordan with a cash infusion of $2.5 billion to help the arid kingdom prop up its free-falling economy. Separately, the European Union announced that it would provide Jordan with $23.5 million. The hefty Gulf State bailout is testament to how seriously they view the problem.

Jordan has recently experienced a spasm of popular unrest and widespread demonstrations, sparked by tax increases and painful austerity measures implemented by King Abdullah II’s prime minister, Hani Mulki, to deal with growing debt. In 2016, cash-strapped Jordan secured a $723-million loan from the International Monetary Fund. The economic reforms instituted by PM Mulki were tied to this loan but proved to be widely unpopular.

Jordanians watched as subsidies on basic food items were eliminated and standards of living declined while taxes increased. Paychecks got smaller while everything became more expensive. This was enough to push Jordanians over the edge. As the riots spread to every province and major town, Abdullah moved quickly to quell the unrest by firing his prime minister and reversing previously implemented tax hikes and austerity measures.

The move has ameliorated tensions and demonstrations have tapered off for now but the underlying problems highlighting the monarchy’s fragility remain. Jordan is a poor, mostly desert country that produces nothing and relies principally on handouts for its existence. Unemployment hovers at a staggering 18 percent and the national debt continues to rise.

More ominous for the kingdom is the fact that some 70 percent of the population considers itself to be “Palestinian.” Unlike the indigenous Jordanian Bedouin, most of the Palestinians are either disloyal or noncommittal to Abdullah. In addition, the monarchy has to contend with a small but growing Salafist extremist movement, which has challenged the government’s legitimacy. Adding to the kingdom’s problems is the presence of some 650,000 Syrian refugees, which are both politically and economically burdensome.

Jordan borders two failed states; Syria to the north and Iraq to the east. Both Damascus and Baghdad receive their marching orders from the mullahs of the Islamic Republic. Teheran would want nothing more than to sow further discord in the Sunni world and harm its chief Muslim nemesis, Saudi Arabia, so it would not be surprising if the Iranians were found to be engaged in some form of behind-the-scenes mischief-making in Jordan.

Like Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and much of the Arab world, Jordan is not immune to civil war. In September 1970, friction between Jordan’s Hashemite Kingdom and the Palestine Liberation Organization, which had encamped itself in Jordan along with 15,000 fighters, came to an explosive climax when Jordan’s King Hussein (Abdullah II’s father) unleashed his Bedouin army on the PLO.

In what has since been referred to by the Palestinians as “Black September,” The PLO fought back tenaciously while Syrian armored forces, in an effort to help the PLO, invaded Jordan from the north. Jordan was teetering and it looked as though there was a real possibility that the monarchy would fall. At the request of the United States, the Israelis intervened on behalf of Hussein and flew a number of reconnaissance flights over the Syrian positions making it clear to the Syrians that Israel would not stand idly by in the face of Syrian aggression against Jordan. The Syrians got the message and promptly withdrew allowing Hussein’s Bedouin army to concentrate its efforts on the Palestinians. The Jordanians accomplished their goals with ruthless efficiency, killing thousands of Palestinians, civilians as well as combatants.

There are those who believe that Israel’s intervention on behalf of Jordan was a colossal mistake. The fall of King Hussein, they argue, would have resulted in the creation of a Palestinian state in eastern Palestine thereby solving the “Palestinian question.” Regardless, the Black September clashes proved that the monarchy was vulnerable.

The so-called Arab Spring, which began in 2010 and raged through the Arab world like wildfire, sparked regime change and internecine conflict throughout the Mideast. Governments in Tunisia and Egypt were overthrown while Libya, Syria and Yemen were plunged into civil war (Iraq’s internecine conflict preceded the Arab Spring).

Though Jordan was largely spared the chaos which gripped its neighbors, the Arab Spring exposed vulnerabilities inherent in Arab societies, which made the kingdom equally prone to instability. This includes lack of democratic institutions, rampant corruption and venality and crucially, a tendency to revert to religious extremism, ethnic hatred and tribalism.

Jordan may have dodged the proverbial bullet for now but inherent flaws in its system of government coupled with ongoing economic woes, a large and largely disloyal Palestinian population, strains imposed by Syrian refugees along with a tendency to revert to religious fundamentalism, mean that the monarchy’s years may be numbered. The Gulf States are cognizant of this, hence their willingness to dig deep into their coffers to sustain a fellow Sunni ally.         

DougMacG

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Re: Front Page: Riots in Jordan put Gulf States on Edge
« Reply #57 on: June 14, 2018, 07:36:32 AM »
"Jordan is a poor, mostly desert country that produces nothing and relies principally on handouts for its existence."

   - What could possibly go wrong.

"Jordan borders two failed states; Syria to the north and Iraq to the east."

   - There are forces that try to sow discord but hard for a rational citizen of Jordan to envy the destruction of their neighbors.

We have been quite lucky to have Jordan relatively stable and helpful or at least neutral in recent times.




Crafty_Dog

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The Jordanian King's Roller Coaster Ride into Syria to Stop Iran
« Reply #60 on: June 19, 2018, 09:27:16 PM »
Analysis
The Jordanian King’s Roller-coaster Ride
Into Syria to Stop Iran

The demonstrations in Amman have calmed down, but now King Abdullah must prevent
ill-meaning Iranian forces from approaching Jordan via Syria

A short video published online by the Fayez family of Jordan reveals the fragile web of
relationships King Abdullah must balance to keep his throne. It shows young members of
the family blocking the main road from the town of Madaba to Amman.

The filming was done at night, and it’s hard to identify the participants, but the family left
no room for doubt. “If Fares Fayez isn’t released from jail, we’ll block the highway to the
airport, and that won’t be the last step,” the family threatened on social media.

Fares Fayez is a famous opposition activist known for cursing Queen Rania and calling for
the king’s ouster. During last week’s demonstrations against a new tax law , he published
insulting posts against the king and his family and urged Abdullah to resign, charging that
he is “chiefly responsible for all the corruption in the kingdom.”

Fayez was arrested about a week ago. Now the police will be in conflict not just with his
family but with members of the large and influential Bani Sakhr tribe. If not contained,
this conflict could drag Jordan into many other internecine battles.

The demonstration that resulted in Fayez’s jailing forced Abdullah to raise more money
from his neighbors to finance the government’s operations, fund its $40 billion debt and,
above all, substitute for the revenue the tax law was supposed to raise. Thanks to the
demonstrations, this law is now in the deep freeze. “The previous government didn’t
properly examine the law before approving it,” said the new prime minister, Omar Razzaz.
This is an uphill battle because Abdullah has once again discovered that aid from the Gulf
states, and especially Saudi Arabia, comes with a diplomatic price tag that Jordan isn’t
eager to pay. This price tag contributed significantly to the economic crisis that led to the
tax law and the ensuing demonstrations.

When the protests began, the only country that expressed a willingness to help Jordan was
Kuwait. It sent a special envoy to Amman to offer $1 billion in aid, half in grants and half
in low-interest loans. The next to volunteer was Qatar, which is being boycotted by Saudi
Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt.

But accepting Qatari aid was problematic because it would put Jordan under obligation to
Qatar and increase Qatari influence in the kingdom at the expense of Saudi Arabia and the
UAE. Thus Abdullah was in an impossible situation.

Riyadh didn’t rush to offer financial help, sufficing with supportive statements. Qatar
came with a check that Jordan couldn’t accept until it knew what the Gulf states
boycotting Qatar would offer. Meanwhile, the streets were seething and the people were
threatening not to make do with Prime Minister Hani Mulki’s dismissal and appointment
of a new government under Razzaz.

Mainly due to the “danger” that Qatar would become Jordan’s benefactor, Riyadh
eventually woke up. It convened a summit with the UAE and Kuwait.

Meager aid

But the results were disappointing. The Gulf states offered only $2.5 billion, including the
$1 billion Kuwait had already pledged. Saudi Arabia and the UAE were offering only $750
million each over five years – some in the form of a deposit Jordan could draw on, some as
loans and some as guarantees that would help Jordan obtain loans from international
institutions.

Jordan had hoped for $5 billion. But even that wouldn’t have been enough to stabilize the
economy without painful reforms.

After receiving this offer, Abdullah told Qatar he would happily accept the $500 million it
offered, which was accompanied by a pledge to employ tens of thousands more
Jordanians in Qatar. The Qatari loan will arrive all at once, in cash, which will be
extremely useful. In exchange, Jordan agreed to accept a new Qatari ambassador in
Amman, after having downgraded relations about 18 months earlier under Saudi and UAE
pressure, as part of their boycott of Qatar.

Razzaz, the new prime minister, couldn’t hide his disappointment with the Gulf states.
Speaking in Jordan while Abdullah was in Kuwait, he said Jordan was under heavy
diplomatic pressure, “but we won’t let anyone extort us.”

The newly appointed Jordanian Prime Minister Omar al-Razzaz (C) meets with
member of Union leaders in Amman, on June 7, 2018. AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP
The extortion in question relates first of all to Jordan’s refusal to accept Donald Trump’s
“deal of the century” as long as Jerusalem, as Trump himself has said, is off the table.
Amman also rejects Riyadh’s plan to deprive Jordan of its special status at Jerusalem’s
holy sites as stipulated in the Israeli-Jordanian peace treaty. Finally, Jordan isn’t willing
to take part in the Saudi war in Yemen. In the past, it also refused Saudi demands that it
either attack Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces or let an Arab coalition attack from
Jordan.

It remains to be seen how Saudi Arabia and the UAE will respond to Jordan’s renewed
friendship with Qatar. But this isn’t the only front where Jordan faces problems. The
agreements Russia is making with Iran, Turkey and Syria about Syria’s future also worry
Amman, mainly because of the proximity to the Jordanian border of Iranian and
pro-Iranian forces.

Earlier this month, Jordan was supposed to host a conference of senior American, Russian
and Jordanian officials to discuss arrangements for supervising the de-escalation zone in
southern Syria. Under the earlier agreement that established this zone, Iranian forces are
supposed to withdraw to a distance of 25 to 40 kilometers (25 miles) from the Jordanian
border, with Syrian army troops replacing them.

Israeli-Jordanian interests

But the meeting was canceled, apparently at Jordan’s request. This is mainly because
Jordan (like Israel) opposes letting the Syrian army deploy in southern Syria , for fear that
pro-Iranian forces will enter the area disguised as Syrian soldiers. Jordan wants
guarantees that only Syrian soldiers, and no foreign forces, will control this zone. On this
issue Jordan is aligned with Israel .

UN forces overlooking the Israeli-Syrian border, this month BAZ RATNER/Reuters
Jerusalem seeks a deeper withdrawal of Iranian forces , to a distance of 50 to 75 kilometers
from the Israeli-Syrian border. Both Israel and Jordan are now apparently waiting to see
what the other achieves before finalizing its own position.

Russia would like Iranian forces to leave all of Syria – not just because Israel demands it,
but to further its own plans. It has even said so publicly. But Iran refuses, as does
Hezbollah, whose leader, Hassan Nasrallah, recently declared that Russia can’t force Iran
(much less Hezbollah) to withdraw.

>> Syria signals willingness to pull Hezbollah back from border with Israel,
report says <<

In a media interview earlier this week, Assad said Iranian and Hezbollah troops would
leave Syria only when they decided that the war on terror – that is, against the Syrian
rebels – had ended. He said Iran, Hezbollah and Russia were all in Syria legitimately,
having arrived at his invitation.

Russia doesn’t accept Assad’s view and is trying to pressure Iran and Hezbollah to at least
quit certain areas if they won’t leave entirely. It has sent blunt military signals. For
instance, Russian forces entered the Al-Qusayr region and other sites in the Qalamoun
Mountains , near the Syrian-Lebanese border, without coordinating with Hezbollah, which
controls these areas. Hezbollah harshly denounced the Russian move.

Admittedly, the Russian troops withdrew less than a day later, but the message was clear:
If Russia decides that Hezbollah is in its way, it won’t hesitate to take military action
against it.

This conflict recalls Russia’s actions during the evacuation of rebel forces from Aleppo: It
created facts on the ground without consulting Iran. Only after Iranian and Hezbollah
forces refused to let the buses full of evacuees pass did Russia include Iran in the
discussions.

Though Jordan and Israel expect Russia to use its leverage against Iran, Moscow has
moved delicately so as not to upset Iran. But now Russia may have a new and unexpected
source of leverage.

The United States’ withdrawal from the nuclear deal with Iran, the new sanctions it has
already imposed and the additional ones it may impose, together with Europe’s hesitant
response to these sanctions, will increase Iran’s dependence on China and Russia. But
whereas China doesn’t demand anything for its extensive economic ties with Iran, Russia
has already proved that it knows how to exact a diplomatic price – sometimes a high one –
from countries dependent on it.

Granted, Russia denounced Trump for withdrawing from the nuclear deal. But it isn’t
blind to the benefits it might reap from this decision.

Still, just as in the story of Jordan’s relations with Qatar and Saudi Arabia in which
Jordan’s economic dependence didn’t produce political capitulation, it would be
unrealistic, at least for now, to think Vladimir Putin can just pull a string and Iranian
Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei will nod like a puppet.

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« Last Edit: June 28, 2018, 10:08:53 AM by Crafty_Dog »

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Is Jordan Israel's best new friend?
« Reply #63 on: June 29, 2018, 04:58:45 PM »
https://theuglytruth.wordpress.com/2016/10/21/is-jordan-israels-new-best-friend/


Is Jordan Israel’s new best friend?
Jordan is boosting its strategic ties with Israel based on their mutual economic interests, while Palestinians sound the alarm against normalization of relations with their enemy.
al-monitor.com
« Last Edit: June 30, 2018, 11:31:02 AM by Crafty_Dog »

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King Abdullah in Action
« Reply #65 on: June 30, 2018, 11:21:16 AM »

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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #66 on: June 30, 2018, 12:37:29 PM »
Third post

JY1 was an enigma. When a radio ham from Nottingham put out a general call during a radio festival in the early 1970s, a man calling himself Hussein, with the call sign JY1, responded. That he claimed to be Jordanian was clear enough from the first two letters. But who, from a nation that used two or three digits as its call signs, would be audacious enough to list themselves as number one? The radio ham was confused. 'He thought that nobody has a call sign of just one digit, so he thought it was a pirate,' explains Henry Balen, of Beeston in Nottinghamshire, whose friend (who has since died) had put out the call. 'He told whoever it was claiming to be JY1 to get off the air in language that I couldn't repeat.' But the amateur radio fanatic, whom Balen's friend had sent off with such profanity, was none other than his majesty King Hussein bin Talal of Jordan, the most famous amateur radio enthusiast in the world.
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'King Hussein was a proper gentleman and explained to him why his call sign was just number one. Because, as the King, he was number one in his country, and the gentleman was very embarrassed.' When he wasn't making war, brokering peace or running his own country for almost half a century, the late King Hussein was often scanning the airwaves for friends, as if he were in broad- casting's earlier version of an Internet chat room.

King Hussein was in prestigious company. During his lifetime he could have hooked up with fellow enthusiasts KY2 (his wife, Queen Noor), EA0JC (King Juan Carlos of Spain) and LU1SM (Argentinian president Carlos Menem). And Priscilla Presley is among the other unlikely, though less stately, celebrities who enjoy communic-ating with the world this way. While in death, the King joins the late VU2RG (Rajiv Ghandi) and K7UGA (Senator Barry Goldwater).

But among them Hussein reigned supreme. In 1970, the radio society of Great Britain made him an honorary member. When he came to Britain in 1993 he found time to give an interview to the society's official magazine, Radiocom.

The King made contact with the first radio amateur in space - W5LFL (Owen Garriott aboard the space shuttle Columbia): 'We managed to arrange a schedule with him on his 92nd orbit,' Hussein was reported as saying. 'It was an excellent contact, something like three or four minutes horizon to horizon.' The King operated not only from Jordan but from the United States, Spain, Austria and Canada when he was on the road. He had his own station in Britain, although it was put out of action for some time when the antennae was damaged.

In a letter to the Daily Telegraph yesterday, one reader recalled making contact with a 28-year-old JY1 in 1964. A small group of US Navy personnel on the Aleutian islands were having trouble getting through to the outside world following an earthquake in Alaska. As they searched the radio waves for operators who could establish a link with their families, they came across JY1 in Amman.

'We passed on several messages to JY1,' wrote Marty Baker, 'who duly phoned the families concerned through the normal links. He must have been considerably out of pocket as a result. What a King!' By his own admission, the King was something of a radio addict.

'I try to operate whenever and wherever I can,' he told Radcom. 'I have constructed equipment, but not as much as I would like to.' The former Harrow student, who became a member of the the school's radio society after he was given a Hallicrafters radio, was a regular on the airwaves even in his later years.

'In times of crisis and difficulty, it was a way to keep in touch with friends throughout the world who were able to help relay messages and to secure humanitarian help as well,' he said.

Earlier this week, one retired teacher in Ireland said he was in regular contact with King Hussein. From Beara, a remote area in West Cork on the west coast of Ireland, Bernie O'Sullivan would talk to the King as he sat on his yacht in the Red Sea.

'We were good friends. He used to look for me and I looked for him,' says Sullivan. 'Sometimes we would make contact three or four times, other times it might be once. The contact lasted for about five years, then it sort of fizzled out. The last time I spoke to him was 10 years ago. I think he eventually became too busy for the radio. I was very sad to see him after the chemotherapy - he was a broken man. The two great loves in his life were amateur radio and flying.' Bernie came across the King by accident when he was switching through radio bands in April 1970.

'I heard him speaking to Americans one day on the one of the bands,' Sullivan said. 'His call sign fascinated me because it was very short, just JY1. The letter stood for Jordan and the number one stood for himself. After hearing the broadcast, myself and a load of other European stations called him up.

'He asked to have a word with the Irish station. He knew that because my call sign started as EI. He used to just give his name as Hussein. There are no titles with radio hams. That's the beauty of our radio - there is no class distinction. It was just Hussein and Bernie.'

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US Muslim leaders mourn Jordanian MB leader
« Reply #69 on: July 12, 2018, 12:28:47 PM »
U.S. Muslim Leaders Mourn Jordanian MB Leader
by John Rossomando  •  Jul 12, 2018 at 2:41 pm
https://www.investigativeproject.org/7526/us-muslim-leaders-mourn-jordanian-mb-leader

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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #72 on: August 17, 2018, 10:27:47 AM »
TTT


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Welcome to Jordan! A den of spies and fajitas
« Reply #76 on: September 10, 2018, 08:18:56 AM »
I'm unfamiliar with this source, but it was forwarded to me by someone of high reliability.

https://limacharlienews.com/mena/welcome-to-jordan-a-den-of-spies-and-fajitas-for-dinner/



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Jordan Times: The happy ending of Baqoura and Ghumar
« Reply #79 on: October 25, 2018, 12:02:17 AM »
second post

This sheds light on the prior post:


The happy ending of Baqoura and Ghumar episode: Is that it?

Oct 24,2018 - Last updated at Oct 24,2018
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Jordanians were overjoyed by His Majesty King Abdullah’s decision to terminate annexes in the 1994 peace treaty with Israel, thus ending a "lease" of Jordanian lands in Baqoura and Ghumar to Israelis under a "special regime".

The move was another triumph in a series of diplomatic wins Jordan has recorded in its soft showdown with Israel, including a relieving end to the crisis that saw two Jordanians shot dead by an Israeli embassy guard in Amman in July 2017. Israel, after reluctance and an act of foolishness, had to apologise and pay millions in compensation to the families of the two men, along with a Jordanian judge shot by Israeli soldiers on the King Hussein Bridge as he was heading to visit relatives in the West Bank in 2014.

Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said on Monday that Amman had not received any request by the Israeli side for negotiations over the termination, but we know that this is coming. After all, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would not be willing to compromise the interests, and voter support, of settlers who have been using the fertile lands (around 7,000 dunums in total) for almost a quarter of a century.

To say that Jordanians were happy with the termination of the annexes does not tell the whole story. Many have been shocked to know the facts about the two areas, including that Baqoura has been literally owned by Jews for almost a century and there has been no "lease", but a special regime that ensured the Israeli farmers ownership rights in the area under Jordanian sovereignty.

President of the Professional Associations Council Ibrahim Tarawneh said in remarks to The Jordan Times this week that Jordanians had been "fooled into thinking it was a lease to be terminated after 25 years, but now we know that there is no lease, and that we were actually under what qualifies as Israeli occupation and exploitation all this time”.

It was not until former premier and the peace treaty architect, Abdul Salam Majali, said in a recent TV interview that Jordan may have to buy back the land from its owners that proud citizens came face to face with a bitter reality. 

Jordanians also took pride in the fact that His Majesty responded to people's demands when he took the decision.  But even that did not stand after a prominent columnist known to be the "leaks man" published an op-ed with inside information, claiming that the King took the decision in May and ordered a thorough legal study of the decision, long before a grassroots campaign picked up momentum, supported by a parliamentary motion, demanding an end to the Baqoura and Ghumar deals. This is good, and expected, but there is no shame in saying that His Majesty responded to the pulse of the street. That is what he does all the time. 

Looking ahead, the least the public expects from officials is transparency over the consultations they will enter with the Israeli side. A couple of leaks to the media would do, whether good or bad news.



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Stratfor: King Abdullah walks a fine line
« Reply #82 on: December 06, 2018, 03:30:46 PM »


Jordan's King Walks a Fine Line Between Domestic and International Demands
By Ryan Bohl
Middle East and North Africa Analyst, Stratfor
Ryan Bohl
Ryan Bohl
Middle East and North Africa Analyst, Stratfor
Jordan's King Abdullah II attends the opening of the country's parliament in 2016 in Amman, Jordan. As the economy founders, Jordan is facing the increasing influence of various protesters.
(JORDAN PIX/ Getty Images)
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Highlights

    Jordan's economic and nationalist protest movements are both gaining strength, demanding changes to Amman's policies that will create potential clashes with the country's international donors.
    Jordan's key contributors — including the United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates — will want the kingdom to pursue policies that are unpopular with its citizens.
    The divide between international and domestic desires could create a crisis for Jordan's monarchy if the country's sponsors attempt to push Amman too far.

A rising tide of protests in Jordan has proved itself capable of exerting power over government policy. Jordan's social contract has long been held together by a combination of the monarchy's opaque placations and substantial foreign aid. But as its economy founders, the country is facing the increasing influence of various protesters. On one hand are the nationalists, who are ideologically opposed to King Abdullah II adopting policies that they believe are in the interest of key donors but not of Jordan itself. On the other hand are economically aggrieved protesters who are increasingly struggling to survive as Jordan implements economic structural reforms, especially those related to new taxes.

Meanwhile, Jordan continues to rely on its foreign aid, meaning its key donors — The United States, Europe and the Arab Gulf states — have substantial sway over the monarchy's decisions. As the demands of these foreign powers clash with the desires of Jordan's growing protest movements, the king will be unable to please everyone, meaning Jordan will likely experience continued unrest and could potentially see internal crisis.
The Big Picture

Jordan's stability is a product of international help rather than its own economic or political strengths. But that help comes with strings attached that the country's people are increasingly starting to reject. If the country's benefactors attempt to push the kingdom into policies that its growing protest movements will oppose, the result could be a crisis.
See Broken Contracts in the Middle East
Small But Significant Policy Changes

Jordan's monarchy has increasingly been caving to the domestic pressures of its protest movements. Most recently, nationalists succeeded in pushing Abdullah to announce that Jordan would pull out of a portion of its 1994 peace treaty with Israel that is due for renegotiation in 2019. In that section of the treaty, Jordan agreed to allow Israel the extraterritorial use of two small farms in the Jordan River valley in Baqura and Ghamr — as both a confidence-building measure and a means for Jordan to avoid paying for a handful of development projects.

The king's adherence to the peace treaty itself remains firm, so his decision did not produce a diplomatic crisis with Israel or a rush to salvage the treaty. But the move exemplifies the king's increasing attempts to appease domestic groups that oppose some of the Jordanian government's actions. Indeed, the nationalist victory came shortly after economically aggrieved protesters succeeded in forcing the cancellation of a deeply unpopular income tax bill in June. This summer's unrest in Jordan represented the largest protests in the country since the 2011 Arab Spring events that resulted in a completely new government.

That diverse street protests have propelled two notable policy shifts in Jordan points to the government's strong desire to please its citizens and avoid unrest. But this stance also risks causing a confrontation between the Jordanian monarchy and the international allies who want it to survive but also act in their interests.
For Coin and Country

During the Arab Spring, demonstrations from Jordan's nationalists and its economically aggrieved protesters aligned and combined to create a combustible environment in the kingdom. More recently, however, the two sides have focused on specific issues with little overlap. Nationalist protests forced Amman to expel the Israeli ambassador after an Israeli Embassy guard killed two Jordanian men in July 2017, and economic protests briefly shut down the country's economy in June, forcing the monarchy to cancel the unpopular income tax bill and put off austerity-driven measures for another day.

The two protest currents are issues-based and poorly organized for now, but the range of issues that animate them are multiplying as Jordan's economy continues its decline and its monarchy embarks on increasingly serious and dramatic efforts to maintain stability, including reaching out to the International Monetary Fund. And the more that relevant issues crop up, the more opportunities the protesters will have to organize. In the near future, a partially approved new tax bill and a U.S. plan for Palestinian peace will provide further opportunities for the protesters to organize against the monarchy in an effort to exert influence over policy.
Charts demonstrating Jordan's rising debt, unemployment and inflation.

Charts demonstrating Jordan's rising debt, unemployment and inflation.

Unfortunately for Jordan, recent policy victories and current demands of nationalists and economically struggling Jordanians have caused dismay for the country's foreign sponsors, who are necessary to keep the country stable. And Jordan's key donors have shown they are willing to play politics with the support Amman desperately needs.
Risking Aid

Given Jordan's demographic challenges and poor resource base, its stability is an oddity in the Middle East and North Africa. But that stability is largely because key powers — including Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United States and Europe — see value in maintaining the kingdom's economy and filling in the gaps of its social contract. This dynamic was on display in June 2018, when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar offered up a combined $1.25 billion in loans and aid to help the strained Jordanian government make it through the year. Even more recently, Israel's muted reaction to the king's decision regarding the 1994 peace treaty demonstrated Israel's continued interest in maintaining stability there.

But as Jordan's protesters continue to sway their king, the question now is what impact they will have on the actions of the international community. Nationalist politics have, in the past, pushed Jordan into policies that damaged its security. King Abdullah I was assassinated by a Palestinian nationalist in 1951 for contemplating a peace treaty with Israel. His successor, King Hussein, then fought and lost the 1967 war with Israel that cost Jordan its productive West Bank territories. Moreover, Hussein's desire to placate his country's Palestinian population made him one of the only Arab leaders to support Saddam Hussein during the Gulf War. This brought Jordanian relations with the Gulf states to an all-time low, compelling Jordan to move closer to the United States by signing the 1994 treaty with Israel, America's key ally.

Jordan's protest movements and its need for foreign aid are pulling its leader in different directions and forcing the king to navigate a shrinking middle ground.

Today, nationalists threaten to challenge Abdullah over an impending U.S. peace plan for Palestine (despite its low chance of success). Few solid details are available about the plan, which is already deeply unpopular with Palestine's Fatah faction, but rumors suggest it will not assuage fears that the Palestinian people will be permanently displaced, nor will it grant them the deeply-desired right to return to Israel. The United States' decision to move its embassy to Jerusalem reinforced Palestinian fears, and recent moves to treat Gaza and the West Bank as separate entities indicate that Washington is willing to cut Fatah out of the peace process entirely.

Nationalist pressure will encourage Jordan to oppose the United States' plan, which has the support of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and a quieter backing from Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. But Jordan's backers have demonstrated their willingness to withhold aid for political reasons, such as when Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates delayed renewing an aid package that expired in 2017 to push Abdullah closer to their own policy positions. They only eventually stepped in to assist Jordan once the major protests of June 2018 reached a crisis point.
Friendly Fire

Jordan's protest movements and its need for foreign aid are pulling its leader in different directions and forcing the king to navigate a shrinking middle ground. With few good options available, Abdullah will become increasingly dependent on thoughtful policy from foreign countries, which is a difficult place to be. Saudi Arabia, for example, has had erratic policies toward its allies — from its dispute with Canada to abducting Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri — and even briefly detained Jordan's wealthiest billionaire in an attempt to exert influence. A miscalculation from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates or both could expose Abdullah to more major protests in his country.

The United States, moreover, could use the promise of aid to push Amman toward supporting the Palestinian peace plan, which will almost certainly be deeply unpopular in Jordan. U.S. security aid is critical for Jordan's armed forces and Amman's security partnership is key to Washington, so a true break is deeply unlikely. But the United States could choose to introduce uncertainty over its support for the king through statements, threats or even tweets, thereby exposing Abdullah to a more assertive nationalist protest movement. Israel, too, could inflame nationalist sentiments in Jordan. Another war in Gaza, Israeli support for the U.S.-led Palestinian peace plan, or even another incident similar to the embassy shooting will worsen Abdullah's position at home.

None of Jordan's allies want to dramatically destabilize the kingdom or undermine its ruler, but they have shown they could behave in ways that open the door to unrest if Jordan's monarchy diverges from their interests in order to appease protest groups. Jordanians at home are increasingly unhappy with their country's economy and its relationship with Israel, and their growing protests have increased their influence over government policy. But that assertiveness will create clashes with the interests of the outside donors Jordan relies on, since it doesn't have the resources to go it alone.


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WSJ: Jordan feeling trapped between US and Palestinians
« Reply #88 on: July 05, 2019, 04:48:33 PM »

Trump Peace Effort Traps Jordan Between U.S. and Palestinians
Jordanian minister presses Washington to heed Palestinian position, warning of consequences of failure
Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, shown in April, cautioned the Trump administration against sending a message that Palestinians have nothing to hope for. Photo: khalil mazraawi/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
By Felicia Schwartz and
Suha Ma’ayeh
July 5, 2019 10:17 am ET

AMMAN, Jordan—As the Trump administration lays the groundwork for an Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, neighboring Jordan has been thrust into the awkward position of opposing many of Washington’s policies while depending on its support.

Jordan sees an independent Palestinian state next to Israel as vital to its interests. More than 50% of Jordan’s 10 million people are of Palestinian descent, including 2.2 million refugees registered with the United Nations.

But Jordan has watched with increasing worry as the Trump administration made moves that the Palestinians say show the U.S. is siding with Israel, such as cutting aid to the West Bank and Gaza and recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Officials here say a plan that doesn’t satisfy Palestinians’ national aspirations could result in a security crisis for Jordan. The monarchy, which already faces protests over economic issues and political rights, could also have to contend with an influx of Palestinians and unrest across the border in the West Bank, officials said.

“Everything that happens in the region has an impact on us,” Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said in an interview. “We’re on the receiving end of every crisis in this part of the world.”
Jordan is currently home to millions of refugees, including 2.2 million Palestinians registered with the United Nations. Above, a camp in Amman. Photo: andre pain/epa-efe/rex/Shutterstock

Washington hasn’t revealed its political solution to the Mideast conflict, promoting only its economic blueprint. That approach won some praise in Israel but was rejected by Palestinians who say aid isn’t welcome if it comes at the expense of a Palestinian state. Gulf Arab states offered cautious backing.

Jordan, in an echo of the Palestinian position, won’t accept a peace plan that doesn’t create an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital and is based on borders before the 1967 Six Day War, Mr. Safadi said.
Weighed DownLow growth and high debt plague Jordan'seconomy.Jordan's gross domestic product, changefrom a year earlier
%
2000’05’10’150246810
Government debt as a share of GDPSource: International Monetary FundNote: 2018-19 data are estimates
%
2000’05’10’15020406080100120

Mr. Trump’s chief Middle East peace adviser, his son-in-law Jared Kushner, has said the U.S. plan would fall in between the Arab Peace Initiative, which dictates those terms, and the Israeli position, which currently calls for Jerusalem as its undivided capital and for Israel to maintain security control over most of the West Bank and the Jordan Valley. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said he won’t evacuate residents from settlements that are considered illegal by much of the international community.

Mr. Safadi cautioned the Trump administration against sending what he called a very dangerous message—that Palestinians have nothing to hope for.

Jordan, however, relies on U.S. aid to stave off economic collapse and political instability. Washington contributes $1.2 billion annually in economic and security aid to Jordan, whose economy has been strained by its absorption of hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011 as well as the conflict’s disruptions to trade routes. Jordan and the U.S. are in constant contact and relations remain strong, Mr. Safadi said.

Resentment is already running high here over consumer-goods price increases and the introduction of new taxes, part of austerity measures under a program with the International Monetary Fund. Jordanians last year protested against tax reform bills that led to the downfall of the prime minister.

The U.S. describes Jordan as a vital ally and considers its support critical to the success of the peace plan. A U.S. official said Washington wasn’t threatening to cut aid to Jordan—but that it was an option depending on Jordan’s reaction to the political segment of the Trump plan. The administration said it would release the plan after Israeli elections, which are in September.

Jordan also relies on aid from Arab Gulf states—who have supported U.S. peace efforts. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait last year pledged a $2.5 billion aid package to Jordan after a proposed income tax increase sparked large protests.

The Trump administration has said that the U.S. decision to move the embassy was aimed at serving U.S. interests and that Jerusalem’s final borders will be part of final status negotiations. And President Trump said the U.S. would resume aid to the Palestinians if they agree to the administration’s peace plan.

The political portion of the plan would be meant to settle the most contentious issues, including borders, security, refugees and the status of Jerusalem. The Trump administration kicked off its peacemaking efforts last week with a two-day conference in Bahrain that set aside those issues and focused instead on the potential for economic development if peace is achieved.

Jordan sent a small, low-profile delegation to Bahrain. The conference received almost no coverage in the tightly regulated Jordanian press.

The Trump administration used the conference to garner support for $50 billion in investment, including $7.4 billion for Jordan over 10 years.

But Mr. Safadi said the gathering didn’t increase hope for a resolution because it failed to address political issues. “Hope is very short in supply, and despair is prevailing,” he said.

Officials here said they worry that the Trump plan could ask Jordan to absorb Palestinians or that Jordan would become a de facto homeland for them if the plan fails to create a Palestinian state. Both outcomes would upset the country’s delicate demographic balance.

“We are very clear we’re not going to solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict at the expense of Jordan,” Mr. Safadi said.

The Trump administration has said Jordan wouldn’t become a Palestinian homeland. But in a move that could raise concern in Jordan, Mr. Kushner in a media briefing Wednesday on the Bahrain conference hinted that he backs Israel’s view that Palestinian refugees should be absorbed into the Arab countries they ended up in after the 1948 war that followed Israel’s establishment.

He said that while Jews who fled Arab countries after the 1948 war were resettled in Israel, Palestinians refugees from that war were moved into camps in neighboring countries, often lacking full rights even today.

“What’s happened to the Israeli—to the Jewish—refugees, is that they’ve been absorbed by different places whereas the Arab world has not absorbed a lot of these refugees over time,” Mr. Kushner said, adding that his team’s plan would be “pragmatic, achievable and viable.”

—Dov Lieber in Tel Aviv contributed to this article.

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Stratfor: Jordan meets with Turkey
« Reply #89 on: July 25, 2019, 10:52:47 AM »
What Happened: Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi has met his Turkish counterpart, Mevlut Cavusoglu, to discuss aligning their stances on the future of Israel-Palestinian relations and their commitment to fund the U.N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, Reuters reported July 23. Both officials also discussed other regional conflicts, including the Gulf Cooperation Council blockade against Qatar, the political situation in Libya, as well as the Syrian civil war.

Why It Matters: Jordan appears to be gradually improving ties with regional powers that are not closely aligned with the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, having already reestablished some relations with Qatar in recent weeks. At the same time, Jordan and Turkey could ultimately revive and renegotiate a recently terminated free trade deal.

Background: Jordan's dependence on foreign aid has long required the country to seek alliances with stronger regional powers despite political disagreements.

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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #90 on: July 26, 2019, 04:50:02 AM »
" .'As long as Pakistan cooperates and pushes the Afghan Taliban to cooperate, Islamabad's ties with Washington will improve."

John Batchelor  had a guest on who is educated in this area but I didn't get his name as I did not hear the beginning.
In short he made it quite clear that absolutely nothing has changed with the antagonism of the Taliban and indeed Al Quiada is at least as strong if not more so , than even during 911.

So this strategy is a total bust.

In this regard the military's supermodel Tulsi Gabbard is correct. 
I don't agree with her we should pull out of afghanistan as the situation might be worse but we may have otherwise made no headway or progress in the other direction.

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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #91 on: July 26, 2019, 08:49:58 AM »
Last two posts are in the wrong thread.  Please correct and then delete here.

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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #92 on: July 26, 2019, 10:53:16 AM »
Last two posts are in the wrong thread.  Please correct and then delete here.

Oops sorry, clicked on wrong link.

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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #93 on: July 26, 2019, 11:19:06 AM »
No worries.


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Re: Jordan:
« Reply #97 on: October 21, 2019, 10:20:59 PM »
Just went to the front page of the Jordan Times to get the Jordanian take on events in Syria.  NOT ONE WORD.

This though about the Yazidis being helped by Russian money , , ,

http://jordantimes.com/news/region/long-persecuted-yazidis-welcome-new-%E2%80%98sanctuary%E2%80%99-temple

This from the editorial page:

http://jordantimes.com/opinion/james-j-zogby/wake-trumps-broken-promises-need-arab-strategy

Days out of date there is this:

http://jordantimes.com/news/region/turkey-outlines-safe-zone-plan-ahead-key-deadline