Jordan’s King Abdullah says ‘sedition’ quashed

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Jordan’s King Abdullah has addressed the rare public rift within the royal family for the first time, saying the “sedition” that caused him “pain and anger” has been buried.

In a statement broadcast to the nation on Wednesday, the king addressed Jordan’s worst political crisis in decades, sparked by an alleged plot involving his half-brother Prince Hamzah.

The crisis in the royal family erupted during the weekend, when Jordan’s military chief of staff visited Prince Hamzah and warned him to stop attending meetings with critics of the government. Things quickly escalated, with Hamzah accusing the security establishment of threatening him and ordering the general to leave his home.

The former crown prince said he was then held under house arrest, and authorities detained 18 other people, including former senior officials.

The government accused Hamzah of being part of a “malicious plot” to destabilise the country with foreign support, but the following day, it said the royal family had resolved the dispute.

“I assure you, that the sedition has been nipped in the bud,” King Abdullah said in the address read out on state television.

“Nothing comes close to what I felt – shock, pain and anger – as a brother and guardian of the Hashemite family and a leader of this dear people,” he added.

The monarch went on to say that Jordan is accustomed to facing and triumphing over challenges.

“Over the course of our history we have defeated all the targets that tried to undermine the homeland, and we came out of them stronger and more united,” he said.

“The challenge of these last days was not the most dangerous for the stability of the country – but it was the most painful for me.

“Hamzah today is with his family in his palace under my protection,” the king added.

“He has committed before the [Hashemite] family to follow the path of his parents and grandparents, to be faithful to their message, and to place the interest of Jordan, its constitution and its laws above all other considerations.”

Abdullah said an investigation will be carried out in accordance with the law, and that the next steps will be governed by “the interests of the homeland and of our loyal people”.

 

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