Jordan's Queen Noor says plot attributed to son ‘wicked slander’

Police officers at a checkpoint in Amman Jordan

Police officers at a checkpoint in Amman Jordan

Official state agency Petra News said "His Royal Highness Prince Hamzah bin Al Hussein is not under house arrest nor is he detained, as reported by some media outlets".

"I had a visit from the Chief of the General staff of the Jordanian Armed Forces this morning, in which he informed me that I was not allowed to go out to communicate with people or to meet with them, because that in the meetings that I had been present in or on social media relating the visits that I've made, there's been criticism of the government or the King", Prince Hamzah said in the video, which the BBC says was sent to the channel by the prince's lawyer. Gen. Yousef Huneiti issued a statement saying Hamzeh had not been detained but instead was "asked to stop movements and activities that were being employed to target Jordan's security and stability", adding that "all the procedures were conducted within the framework of the law and after extensive investigations".

Almost 20 people were arrested in all.

Official news agency Petra named former close aides to the royal family Bassem Awadallah, chief of the royal court in 2007-2008, and Sherif Hassan bin Zaid among an unspecified number of suspects arrested.

King Abdullah has succeeded in bringing political stability to the country and gaining stature as a prominent Arab leader whose message of moderation has found an echo, especially in Western forums. He also says Awadallah had been trying to secure a place for Hamzah's wife to flee, with a foreign intelligence service contacting her and planning to smuggle her out of the country.

In the phone call, King Mohammed VI enquired about the situation in Jordan following reports of an attempted coup d'Etat, a statement from Morocco's royal cabinet has said.

The alleged plot "included at least one other Jordanian royal as well as tribal leaders and members of the country's security establishment", the USA daily added.

"The kingdom stresses its full support for the Hashemite kingdom of Jordan. and for the decisions and measures taken by King Abdullah II and Crown Prince Hussein to safeguard security and stability", it said. A State Department spokesman said the U.S. is in touch with officials in Jordan. It borders Israel, the Palestinian territories, Syria, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. He also pointed to the decline in Jordan's economy during the coronavirus pandemic.

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In a separate statement, Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud said Jordan's stability and prosperity was the "basis for the stability and prosperity of the whole region" and vowed "firm and lasting" support for it.

Abdullah had appointed Hamzah crown prince in 1999 in line with Hussein's dying wishes, but in 2004 stripped him of the title and gave it to his own eldest son Hussein.

Jordan made peace with Israel in 1994.

"[Jordanians'] well being has been put second by a ruling system that has decided that its personal interests, financial interests, that its corruption is more important than the lives and dignity and future of the ten million people who live here", he said.

However, he was seen as too young and inexperienced to be named successor at the time of King Hussein's death.

Abdullah stripped his half-brother Hamzah of his title as crown prince in 2004, saying he had chose to "free" him 'from the constraints of the position of crown prince in order to give you the freedom to work and undertake any mission or responsibility I entrust you with'. The designation was out of respect for Hussein, who is known to have favored Hamzah the most among his 11 children from four marriages.

Abdullah and Hamzah have not displayed any open rivalry over the years.

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