You are here: Home » International » News » Politics
Business Standard

Jordan's former crown prince in house arrest over coup bid: Report

King's half-brother Hamza raided, at least 16 aides taken into custody

Jordan | Jordanian King Abdullah II

Mohammad Tayseer Layan Odeh & Reema Alothman | Bloomberg 

Hamza Bin Hussein
Former Crown Prince Hamza Bin Hussein

said it uncovered a plot to destabilise the kingdom that involved King Abdullah II’s half-brother and extended beyond the country’s borders.

The sibling, former Crown Prince Hamza Bin Hussein (pictured), worked in concert with foreign entities, Deputy Prime Minister Ayman Safadi said on Sunday, in a first official explanation of a string of arrests a day earlier. More than 16 people, including at least one other royal, were taken into custody, he said at a news conference in the capital, Amman.

“There was an effort to target Jordan’s security and stability, this effort was foiled,” he said, giving no evidence to back up his claims. He declined to say whether the unidentified foreign entities were people or governments, and if any money was paid to those involved in the “plot”.

The crackdown comes as struggles with a worsening squeeze on its finances and a resurgence of Covid-19 cases that has prompted the government to renew restrictions on movement. The U.S. most recently provided the Middle East kingdom with $700 million in August.


“We are closely following the reports and in touch with Jordanian officials,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement. “King Abdullah is a key partner of the United States, and he has our full support.”

Jordan’s stability is crucial to the region as it sits at the crossroads of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It’s home to as many as 2 million Palestinian refugees and their descendants, and chaos there could endanger the security of Israel, with which it shares a frontier and made peace in 1994. Bordering both Syria and Iraq, the kingdom has also fashioned itself as a force for moderation in a turbulent neighbourhood.

Security personnel and armoured vehicles were seen parked outside royal palaces and patrolling the Dabouq neighborhood of the capital, Amman, on Saturday. The Washington Post said earlier that Hamza, the eldest son of the late King Hussein and his fourth wife Queen Noor, was under house arrest at his palace in Amman. It cited a senior West Asia intelligence official briefed on the events as saying there was an ongoing investigation into an alleged plot to unseat King Abdullah, Hamza’s older half-brother.

Hamza was the crown prince for four years before the title was transferred in 2004 to the current king’s eldest son, Hussein.

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Mon, April 05 2021. 01:16 IST