Jordan says the prince has contacted “foreign parties” over plans to destabilize the country

Jordan’s Deputy Prime Minister Aiman ​​Saffadi said on Sunday that King Abdullah’s half-brother and former Crown Prince Hamza had contacted foreign political parties about plans to destabilize the country and had been investigating for some time.

On Saturday, the military said it warned the prince about actions aimed at “safety and stability” of major US allies. Prince Hamza later said he was under house arrest. Several celebrities have been detained.

“The investigation was monitoring foreign interference and communication at the right time to destabilize Jordan,” Saffadi said.

He said these included foreign intelligence agencies that contacted Prince Hamza’s wife to organize a plane for the couple to leave Jordan.

Jordan Prince Hamza and his wife Princess Noor
Prince Prince Hamza of Jordan and his wife Princess Noor arrive at Zaran Palace and celebrate their wedding in Amman, Jordan on May 27, 2004. (Husein Mara / AP photo)

“Initial research has shown that these activities and movements have reached a stage where they have a direct impact on national security and stability, but his dignity is within the family to prevent it from being abused. It was decided that it would be best to speak directly to Prince Hamza to deal with in, “he said.

Earlier, Queen Noor, the mother of Hamza, the widow of the late Jordanian king, defended her son.

“I hope that truth and justice will overcome all the innocent victims of this evil slander,” she wrote on Twitter. “God blesses them and keeps them safe.”

Jordan's Prince Hamza (left) and his mother, Queen Noor
Prince Hamza of Jordan (left) and her mother Queen Noor (right) are standing during a wedding ceremony in Amman, Jordan, on May 27, 2004. (Husein Mara / AP photo)

Mr Saffadi said security forces had asked those involved in the plot to refer to the state’s security courts.

Jordan’s neighbors and allies have expressed solidarity with King Abdullah on the security measures of the kingdom, an important ally of the United States.

Jordan is considered one of the most stable countries in the Middle East. The Moroccan royal palace said it had called Abdullah II to express solidarity and support for the country’s security measures, reflecting statements of support from other Jordanian allies and neighbors.

King Abdullah
King Abdullah II of Jordan will address the European Parliament on January 15, 2020 in Strasbourg, France. (Vincent Kessler / Reuters)

Some opposition forces have gathered around Prince Hamza in a move that has offended the king, according to officials familiar with the situation.

Prince Hamza was dismissed as a successor to the throne in 2004 by his half-brother, King Abdullah, in a move to strengthen the power of the monarch.

Prince Hamza was on the sidelines, but angered the authorities by establishing relationships with dissatisfied people within a powerful tribe.

Powerful tribe

Prince Hamza was not considered a major threat to Jordan’s monarchy and has been left behind for years, but the move against him involved close members of the royal family after King Abdullah took the throne. It represents the first such case.

Authorities are increasingly interested in his efforts to build relationships with disgruntled persons within a strong tribe.

These people, known as Herak, have been raising unemployment to record levels and deepening poverty in recent weeks, calling for protests against corruption in countries that have been hit hard by the economic impact of COVID-19. .. Authorities detained dozens of people and cracked down on several demonstrations.

The tribes that control the security forces form the basis for the kingdom’s Hashimite monarchy.

Abdullah II of Jordan
King Abdullah II of Jordan will visit the ceremonial soldiers at the welcome ceremony on June 22, 2011. (Sergei Spinsk / AFP / Getty Images)

According to the state news agency, Basem Awadara, a longtime educated king’s best friend in the United States, who later became Minister of Finance and adviser to Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman, and Sharif, a member of the royal family. Hassan Ben Zayed was detained with another unnamed person.

Details are not given.

The Saudi court has expressed “full support” with King Abdullah for all decisions he has made to maintain security and stability. Egypt, Lebanon, Bahrain, Iraq, Kuwait and Qatar also stood beside him. The US State Department said the King was a “major partner” and received full support.

High-ranking officials and royal arrests are rare in Jordan, which is considered one of the most stable countries in the Arab world.

Political wilderness

Prince Hamza, who had been cared for by his mother Queen Noor as the successor to his late King Hussein, has been pushed into the political wilderness since he was dismissed as Crown Prince.

Abdullah succeeded his father, King Hussein, who ruled Jordan for nearly 50 years.

The tradition of the Hashimite dynasty in Jordan under the 1952 Constitution gives the eldest son inheritance, but the monarch retains the option of nominating a brother.

King Abdullah succeeded in bringing political stability to the country and gaining a position as a prominent Arab leader, especially in the western forums, where the moderate message echoed.

Epoch Times staff contributed to this report

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