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King meets UK defence minister, key lawmakers

By JT - Jun 24,2015 - Last updated at Jun 24,2015

His Majesty King Abdullah meets with key British lawmakers in London on Wednesday (Photo courtesy of Royal Court)

AMMAN — His Majesty King Abdullah on Wednesday met with Secretary of State for Defence Michael Fallon in London, a Royal Court statement said.

Discussion covered ways to boost bilateral cooperation between the two countries in the military, defence and training fields, and resume the strategic coordination in facing regional crises. 

The meeting came as part of His Majesty’s working visit to the UK.

The two sides reviewed the latest regional developments, especially in Syria, Iraq and Libya, and the efforts to face extremism and terrorism.

Also on Wednesday, His Majesty met separately with Lord Speaker Baroness Frances D'Souza and members of the Houses of Lords and Commons at the British parliament to discuss bilateral relations as well as regional and international developments.

The King voiced his appreciation of the depth of relations between the two countries, highlighting the importance of enhancing cooperation between the Jordanian Parliament and the Houses of Lords and Commons in the British parliament.

His Majesty outlined the challenges and developments in the Middle East and the efforts exerted to address them with the aim of enhancing chances for peace and stability.

Fighting terrorism and terror gangs is a priority, the King said, calling for intensifying and joining regional and international efforts to counter this threat.

He stressed the need to adopt a comprehensive anti-terror approach involving the military, security, ideological, social and educational aspects.

Also at the meeting, during which the developments in Syria were discussed, the King said the crisis there is becoming more complicated, which requires that the international community work harder towards a political solution.

Discussions also covered the latest issues in Iraq, Libya and Yemen, and the need to reach political solutions to crises there and assist their peoples in creating a better future, the statement said.

Highlighting Jordan’s reform drive, His Majesty said the Kingdom has taken several advanced steps within its evolutionary reform process based on a clear roadmap.

The King cited the bills regulating political life — such as the municipalities, decentralisation, elections and political parties laws — and their role in enhancing public participation in decision making.

In response to a question on women’s participation in politics, he said Jordanian women play a major role in advancing Jordanian society and the homeland.

His Majesty mentioned several challenges facing Jordan, especially in the economic field due to regional circumstances, citing the growing burden of hosting Syrian refugees and the growing pressure on the Kingdom’s infrastructure and limited resources, particularly within host communities in the northern region.

Baroness D’Souza and other senior members of the House of Lords expressed their appreciation of Jordan’s efforts to bring stability and security to the region, stressing their support for the Kingdom and its “wise and moderate” foreign policy implemented in dealing with regional challenges.

They stressed the need for the international community and key players to intensify their support to Jordan, so that it would be able to handle the refugee crisis, overcome economic challenges stemming from regional crises and reinforce its “focal role” in addressing the region’s issues.

The meeting was attended by Royal Court Chief Fayez Tarawneh, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh, King’s Office Director Jafar Hassan and Jordan’s Ambassador in London Mazen Homoud.

In remarks to the Jordan News Agency, Petra, Baroness D’Souza said she and her colleagues admire King Abdullah for his comprehensive understanding of world issues, describing His Majesty as a strategic expert who can suggest solutions to problems facing the Middle East. 

Head of the Parliamentary Jordan Group Deputy Crispin Blunt described the discussion between the King and influential figures in the UK parliament as constructive and useful, adding that the King is a key international personality with a unique ability in communication with influential forces.

 

Jordan’s ability to maintain its stability and play a constructive role concerning the Syrian crisis is admirable, he said, adding that supporting the stability of Jordan is a higher interest of Britain. 

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