A Jordanian royal family member and the former head of the royal court have been arrested
04 April, 2021, 08:37
The Washington Post said Jordanian authorities detained the former crown prince and arrested almost 20 other people after what officials called a "threat to the country's stability".
According to BBC, Prince Hamzah, the half-brother of King Abdullah, was the late King Hussein's favorite son from his favorite wife, American-born Queen Noor.
He said that a number of his friends had been arrested, his security had removed and his internet and phone lines had been cut. He said he was speaking over satellite Internet, but expected that service to be cut as well.
Hamzah said he had been informed he was being punished for taking in part in meetings in which the king had been criticized, though he said he was not accused of joining in the criticism. In the same message, the prince accused the Jordanian regime of being corrupt and exposing the population to a system of personal and financial favor from the monarch.
"I'm not part of any conspiracy or nefarious organization or foreign-backed group, as is always the claim here for anyone who speaks out", he said.
I have spoken with people and tried to remain connected to people in the hope that they realise that there are members of this family who still love this country, who care for them and who will put them above all else, and so that I was able to remain aware and in touch with them and aware of their plight and their needs.
In Jordan, the royal family still has a lot of political power.
Hamzah is a popular figure in Jordan.
Hamzah issued the recording after the country's military had told him to halt actions used to target the country's "stability and security".
General Yousef Huneiti, the army chief of staff, denied reports that Prince Hamzah was arrested but said he was asked to "stop some movements and activities that are being used to target Jordan's security and stability".
He also said that die Investigations will continue and their results will be published with full transparency and clarity.
He also emphasised that "no one is above the law and that Jordan's security and stability take precedence over any consideration".
Among those arrested were Bassem Awadallah, a longtime confidante of King Abdullah II who later became minister of finance, and Sharif Hassan bin Zaid, a member of the royal family.
Petra had earlier reported that two senior officials who formerly worked for the palace, along with other suspects, had been arrested for "security reasons", without providing further details.
Multiple countries, including Saudi Arabia and the United States, have expressed strong support for the king.
He has cultivated close relations with U.S. and other Western leaders over the years, and Jordan was a key ally in the war against the Islamic State group.
King Abdullah has ruled Jordan - which borders Israel, the Palestinian territories, Syria, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia - since the 1999 death of of his father, King Hussein, who ruled the country for close to half a century. The US State Department, a key ally of Jordan, has said Abdullah is a "key partner" in Washington and has full support.
Countries like Egypt, the USA and the Saudi Arabia have expressed support for King Abdullah.
A former royal envoy and a former confidant of King Abdullah bin al-Hussein were among those said to have been arrested, amid an ongoing investigation into an alleged attempt to unseat the monarch.
Discontent has risen, with Jordanians increasingly angry over the government's handling of the pandemic and its inability to contain the economic devastation wreaked by strong lockdowns and weekend quarantines.
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