Saudi backs Jordan on arrest of former head of Royal Court

Jordanians follow the latest political developments in their country on a television set at a cafe in the capital Amman

Jordanians follow the latest political developments in their country on a television set at a barber shop in the capital Amman, on April 4, 2021.

"Some members of the royal family have been trying to instrumentalise Jordan's economic and governance problems to present themselves as reformists who possess the solution to Jordan's challenges", said Ms Khatib.

Hamzah had released a video message via the BBC in which he accused Jordan's rulers of nepotism and corruption.

State-run news agency Petra says among those arrested for "security reasons" were former close aide to royal family Bassem Awadallah.

The half-brother of Jordan's King Abdullah II has said he has been placed under house arrest and accused the country's "ruling system" of incompetence and corruption, exposing a rare rift within the ruling monarchy of a close Western ally.

Washington, Gulf allies and the Arab League were quick to stress their support for Abdullah's pro-Western government, seen as an anchor of stability in the Middle East.

"Jordan is normally a stable Arab kingdom that has been a staunch ally of countries in Europe and the U.S., particularly when it comes to counterterrorism cooperation in the Middle East", Sweis said.

"During the weekend, Prince Hamzah told me about what happened in Jordan and I proposed him to send his wife and kids to stay in my house". "There are members of this family who still love this country, who care for (its people) and will put them above all else".

In a statement published by the state news agency, the military said the warning to Prince Hamzah was part of a broader, ongoing security investigation in which a former minister, a junior member of the royal family and unnamed others were detained.

These included a foreign intelligence agency contacting Hamzah's wife to organise a plane for the couple to leave Jordan, he said.

The official Al-Rai newspaper warned on Sunday that Jordan's "security and stability" were a "red line that must not be crossed or even approached".

Safadi declined to identify the alleged foreign parties or say what the charges were, but said authorities acted because the alleged conspirators were "talking about timing".

His mother, American-born Queen Noor, has said she is praying for what she called innocent victims of "wicked slander".

Jordan is also home to more than two million Palestinian refugees, most of whom have Jordanian citizenship.

According to the same source, "there is certainly resentment on his part, because he has never digested losing his title of crown prince".

King Abdullah removed Prince Hamzah from his position as heir to the throne in 2004, in a move that consolidated his power.

These close ties are reportedly the reason why the Israeli chose to help Hamzah's family following the investigation into the alleged coup.

He also added that King Abdullah II met with his half-brother last night and "ordered him to stop all actions that targeted Jordan's security and stability", to which Hamzah "responded negatively".

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