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Jordan: wave of arrests amid power struggles

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The Jordanian authorities on Saturday carried out a wave of arrests for “security reasons”, in particular of relatives of the royal family.

The half-brother of King Abdullah II, Prince Hamza, announced on Saturday that he had been “under house arrest in his palace in Amman, after being accused by the army of activities against ‘the security of the kingdom'”.

In a video transmitted to the BBC by his lawyer, the Jordanian prince claimed that the army chief of staff came to his home and told him that he was “not allowed to go out. “. He denied having taken part in a conspiracy and accused his country’s authorities of “corruption” and “incompetence”.

A “plot”

Aged 41, Hamza is the last son of King Hussein, born of a fourth and final marriage to Queen Noor, of American origin. In accordance with the wishes of his father, who died in 1999, he was appointed crown prince when Abdullah II became king. But in 2004, the latter had withdrawn his title to give it to his eldest son Hussein.

In a reaction on Twitter, the queen, mother of Prince Hamza, denounced Sunday a “slander”, and affirmed “to pray that the truth and justice prevail for all the innocent victims”.

According to a Jordanian analyst who does not want to be identified for security reasons, Prince Hamza had, lately, “multiplied in front of his circle of friends the criticisms against what he described as corruption within the power” .

According to this same source, “there is certainly resentment on his part, because he has never digested to have lost his title of crown prince”, more than 15 years ago.

Authorities arrested former king’s adviser Bassem Awadallah and others, according to state-run Petra news agency, while the U.S. daily Washington Post reported on a plot to overthrow the king. .

The Gulf monarchies, important partners of Jordan, a small country devoid of natural resources and largely dependent on foreign aid, unanimously united behind the Jordanian sovereign by giving their full support to his power, in separate declarations. The Kingdom of Jordan is due to celebrate its 100th anniversary on April 11.

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