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Israel provocations will affect ties with Jordan — King

By JT - Sep 15,2015 - Last updated at Sep 15,2015

His Majesty King Abdullah meets with British Prime Minister David Cameron in Amman on Monday (Photo courtesy of Royal Court)

AMMAN — His Majesty King Abdullah said Monday that Jordanian-Israeli ties will be affected if the ongoing Israeli provocations at Al Aqsa Mosque continue.

During a joint press conference with UK Prime Minister David Cameron, His Majesty said: “... I would like to state, in your presence that if this continues to happen, actually as of today, any more provocations in Jerusalem will affect the relationship between Jordan and Israel; and Jordan will have no choice, but to take action, unfortunately.”

 

Following are the remarks by His Majesty and Cameron:

 

His Majesty King Abdullah:

Prime Minister, if you would allow me, I’m delighted to have you back here in Jordan, as a dear friend to me and to this country.

The relationship between Jordan and Britain has been a long and historic one; and even more so over the past several years, as we have come closer, shoulder-to-shoulder, with not only the regional challenges we have had to face, but unfortunately the global challenges that have been a major problem for all of us as we have been having to fight this global threat of terror, what we in the Islamic world call khawarej, the outlaws or renegades of Islam. You and I have discussed this before that this is a global fight that brings all religions together.

Jordanian and British troops have been standing shoulder-to-shoulder in many regions and, again, we will continue to do so. I know this is the sort of discussions I look forward to having here with you.

Equally as important, you are here to look at the issue of refugees. We commend the role that your government and your country has played in this respect; and commend the role that Europe has been playing in opening its borders and its hearts to the haunting images that we have seen of migrants trying to get to Europe.

As you know, Jordan has had this burden of refugees for some time now. One fifth of our population, over 20 per cent, are Syrian refugees. Only 15 per cent of which are in the refugee camp, which you visited today.

We are very thankful for the role your government has played in supporting Jordan with the refugee issues; but again, I think that the role Jordan has played has been a role that has lessened the burden on Europe. We hope, obviously, that the international community will be able to deal with the terrible humanitarian crisis.

I know that England has always been there to help Jordan and to find a solution to the Syrian problem. Again, we’ll have a chance to discuss these issues.

I look forward to the discussions we are going to have this afternoon. In your presence, if I can just say one last issue that we in Jordan have been very concerned and angered with the recent escalations in Jerusalem, specifically in Al Aqsa Mosque. 

We have gotten reassurances from the Israeli government that this would not happen. Unfortunately, these are reassurances we have heard in the past.

So, I would like to state, in your presence that if this continues to happen, actually as of today, any more provocations in Jerusalem will affect the relationship between Jordan and Israel; and Jordan will have no choice, but to take action, unfortunately.

But having said that welcome back to this country, you are a great friend of Jordan and we thank you and the British people for the wonderful relationship. 

I look forward to discussions we will have this afternoon.

 

UK Prime Minister David Cameron:

Well, thank you very much Your Majesty for that welcome and it is a great honour for me to be back in Jordan with Your Majesty.

The first thing I want to do is to thank the Jordanian people, through you, for the extraordinary generosity they have shown hosting so many Syrian refugees. I have seen this with my own eyes this afternoon, here in your country.

As you say, Britain and Jordan have a very strong relationship. I think it has gotten stronger over recent years, and we want to build on that.

First of all, on the issue of Syria, Britain is the second largest contributor to the Syrian refugee crisis, after the United States of America. We are proud of that. We will continue with that investment. 

We hope other countries will do more because it is so important to help keep people close to their homes, to clothe, and feed and house them close to their homes, so they don’t make that perilous journey across the seas, which has led to such appalling losses of life; but, of course, in Britain we will be taking 20,000 Syrian refugees straight out of refugee camps here in Jordan and elsewhere and give them a home in our country.

I absolutely agree with Your Majesty that we need to continue to face up to the global threat of terrorism, which we see in such evidence with ISIL, with Daesh, in Syria and the threat they pose to the whole region and in Iraq, of course, as well.

I also hope that we will also be able to discuss, as you have said, the situation with regards to peace between Israel and the Palestinians. I had a meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu about this issue last week, and he said that he was ready to talk to the Palestinian leader without preconditions. We very much want to do everything we can to encourage that process.

We also continue to work with you on defence. I am very proud of the work of our armed forces are doing in collaboration, in cooperation, with yours... and the economic cooperation we have to help strengthen the Jordanian economy — all these issues. So the very close relationship between our countries, which we can discuss today. 

 

Thank you.

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