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Jordan Blames Plot on Former Crown Prince

Government calls conspiracy an attack on the kingdom's security and stability
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2021 2:10 PM CDT

(Newser) – Jordan implicated Hamzah bin Hussein on Sunday in a plot against the government, saying the former crown prince was working with foreign interests. "These were efforts that threatened Jordan's security and stability," the deputy prime minister said, "and these efforts were foiled." The prince, who's a half-brother of King Abdullah II, issued a statement on video Saturday denying involvement in a conspiracy while criticizing the government. He said he was under house arrest. Statements of support were issued immediately by allies including the US, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Israel, the Wall Street Journal reports. At least 20 high-ranking officials were arrested. The American-born Queen Noor tweeted, "Praying that truth and justice will prevail for all the innocent victims of this wicked slander"—apparently referring to the allegations against Hamzah, her son.

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The deputy prime minister, Ayman al-Safadi, laid out the case against the former crown prince in a televised press conference, per the Washington Post. He said Hamzah plotted with another member of the royal family, an official who once was in charge of the royal court, and a representative to Saudi Arabia. He accused them of "promoting sedition." Someone with a foreign connection offered a private jet to Hamzah's family for leaving Jordan, he said. Hamzah does have support in the kingdom, and the government said the king will discuss the matter with him—keeping it "within the framework of the family"—before it goes to the security courts. At the same time, the government sent messages about how the matter would be handled. "These designs and plots were dealt with with firmness," Safadi said. And the head of parliament said that "the king is a red line" and that Jordan would oppose "any trembling traitorous hand that aims to mess with our security and stability." (Read more Jordan stories.)

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