Jordan 'not up for sale' to Saudi, UAE, says lawmaker
A Jordanian lawmaker has lashed out at Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, accusing the oil-rich Gulf states of attempting to "buy off" the Hashemite kingdom.
Khaled Ramadan made the comments last week, amid reports Jordan has come under pressure from Riyadh and Abu Dhabi to accept a controversial US plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace dubbed Deal of the Century.
"The country's fate is being put on the table. You young men and women have to raise your voices to the King and the whole state," Ramadan told university students in Amman, Al-Jazeera reported.
"Jordan is not up for sale in exchange for money from [Saudi Crown Prince] Mohammed bin Salman and [Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh] Mohammed bin Zayed or anyone else," he added.
The lawmaker's comments come amid reports that Saudi Arabia and its close ally the UAE have offered financial incentives for Jordan to embrace the so-called "Deal of the Century".
Other reports have suggested the deal could see Riyadh take over guardianship of Jerusalem's holy sites from Jordan.
Jordan's King Abdullah II has repeatedly said he will "not give in to financial temptations or pressure to abandon Jerusalem", according to The New Arab's Arabic-language service.
Last December, King Abdullah attended an extraordinary meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul to discuss the divisive US decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
The meeting declared the decision "null and void legally" and "a deliberate undermining of all peace efforts".
The king's participation reportedly angered officials in Riyadh, which snubbed the meet along with the UAE and Egypt - all electing to send senior foreign ministry officials.
US officials working on the Middle East peace plan have reportedly asked Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas about forming a confederation with Jordan. Jordan has since rejected the plan.
US President Donald Trump has pledged to unveil a plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace, saying he wanted to reach the "ultimate deal".
Palestinian leaders have rejected the deal and said it is blatantly biased in favour of Israel.