In both Jordan and Israel, there is talk of a coup


Meanwhile, next door in Israel is Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu He appeared before a District Court in Jerusalem on Monday Meanwhile, public prosecutors began the proof phase in a corruption trial facing the Israeli leader. Although he left early, Netanyahu was in the room when State Attorney Liat Ben Ari was She delivered her opening statement, Accusing the prime minister of “dangerous government corruption” for allegedly tampering with coverage in his favor on a major Israeli news site starting in 2012. The case is part of a series of bribery, fraud and breach of trust charges directed against Netanyahu by the state. Attorney General last year.

But the trial wasn’t even the most immediate threat to Netanyahu’s rule. On Monday, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin met one-on-one with the leaders of the country’s major parties in the wake of last month’s elections. As in the case of the previous three votes, political calculations are hawkish, as the blocs for and against Netanyahu will likely be unable to secure a mandate to govern. Rivlin is supposed to announce on Wednesday who will be given the first chance to form a governing coalition. Although he hinted that “moral considerations” might prevent Netanyahu from being exploited, the incumbent prime minister has garnered more support from other party leaders than from any of his competitors.

“We are most likely in a long period of coalition negotiations, bargaining and bargaining to see if Netanyahu or his supposed opposition can form a coalition,” Written by former American diplomat Aaron David Miller. “if not, Arrived energetic An Israeli columnist reflects the spirit of the Easter season, a fifth election – unfortunately for most Israelis – looms like the eleventh plague. “

In statements after his appearance before the court, Netanyahu Description of the legal actions against him Such as “witch hunt” and “coup attempt.” But Benny Gantz, the Israeli defense minister, tweeted that Netanyahu “is the one who is trying to carry out a government coup.”

Gantz was the only senior Israeli official to comment on the unrest in Jordan over the weekend. He said that the developments were “An internal Jordanian case.” But he stressed that “a strong and prosperous Jordan is in our security and economic interest.”

On Saturday, US and officials from major Arab countries, including Egypt and Saudi Arabia, expressed their support for Abdullah. Under the king’s rule, the resource-poor kingdom of 10 million people was a major partner in the US-led campaign against the Islamic State and aided US forces in security operations around the world, My colleagues explained.

“The coup plot is a big plot for Jordan, as the Hashemite regime portrays itself as an oasis of stability in a sea of ​​unrest,” Gillian Schwedler Books, Professor of Political Science at Hunter College, posted on The Post’s Monkey Cage. “King Abdullah II is unpopular, but many consider the continuation of his rule better than the alternatives that may include Islamic rule, slipping into civil war or losing power to East Bank Jordanians.” (More than half of the country’s population is of Palestinian origin, that is, from the West Bank).

But Hamza did not go quietly. In a leaked recording filmed on Saturday, he spoke in a defiant tone and said he would not remain silent because the authorities described his activities as seditious. “I am not the person responsible for the collapse of governance, the corruption and incompetence that has prevailed in our ruling structure over the past 15 to 20 years and that has been getting worse … I am not responsible for the lack of faith,” Hamzah said in A video leaked to the BBC. “It has reached a point where no one can speak or express their views on anything without being bullied, arrested, harassed and threatened.”

The Jordanian royal court announced, on Monday, that the differences between the king and his half-brother will be mediated by their uncle Prince Hassan, as it is an internal family matter. The alleged conspirators Hamza may face more serious repercussions.

“The way it was revealed, with the arrests and the videos, was horrific.” Jawad Anani, former Jordanian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Economy. He told the New York Times. Despite the tensions, the royal family has always presented the image of a united front. But [Saturday’s] Events shattered that picture, and disputes erupted in broad daylight. “

Hamzah, the eldest son of Queen Noor, the fourth wife of the late King Hussein, was stripped of his status and privileges as crown prince in 2004 by Abdullah, who took advantage of his son instead. In the years that followed, he was a staunch critic of government mismanagement and graft and his sisterhood with some of the opposition camps inside the country. Dissent against the king has become more and more common in recent years, as many Jordanians have become frustrated with rampant corruption and the country’s stagnant economy.

Hamza “allows himself to be part of a decisive machine against the ruling regime, when he was going to the tribal gatherings that were critical of the ruling establishment even when he said nothing”, a prominent Jordanian politician To ReutersOn the condition of anonymity. When he spoke [in the recording] On deteriorating governance and silencing critics, this was very confrontational. “

Jordan has seen waves of protests over the years, including a major uprising in 2018 that led to the resignation of the prime minister and forced Abdullah to intervene and freeze planned increases in electricity and fuel prices. In Washington, Abdullah is still a well-known and respected statesman and was the first Arab leader President Biden spoke to after winning the election in November.

But his troubles may be escalating at home. “Among the security services dominated by the East Bank, small divisions have emerged in recent years over quiet criticism of the king,” Schwedler Books. In East Bank circles more broadly, some have suggested that King Abdullah may be the last king of Jordan, and some have even They demanded an end to the property. “

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