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Ekstrom Library

Government Resources and International Information: Jordan


About Jordan

Following World War I and the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, the UK received a mandate to govern much of the Middle East. Britain separated out a semi-autonomous region of Transjordan from Palestine in the early 1920s, and the area gained its independence in 1946; it adopted the name of Jordan in 1950. The country's long-time ruler was King HUSSEIN (1953-99). A pragmatic leader, he successfully navigated competing pressures from the major powers (US, USSR, and UK), various Arab states, Israel, and a large internal Palestinian population. Jordan lost the West Bank to Israel in the 1967 war and barely managed to defeat Palestinian rebels who attempted to overthrow the monarchy in 1970. King HUSSEIN in 1988 permanently relinquished Jordanian claims to the West Bank. In 1989, he reinstituted parliamentary elections and initiated a gradual political liberalization; political parties were legalized in 1992. In 1994, he signed a peace treaty with Israel. King ABDALLAH II, the son of King HUSSEIN, assumed the throne following his father's death in February 1999. Since then, he has consolidated his power and undertaken an aggressive economic reform program. Jordan acceded to the World Trade Organization in 2000, and began to participate in the European Free Trade Association in 2001. In 2003, Jordan staunchly supported the Coalition ouster of Saddam in Iraq and following the outbreak of insurgent violence in Iraq, absorbed thousands of displaced Iraqis. Municipal elections were held in July 2007 under a system in which 20% of seats in all municipal councils were reserved by quota for women. Parliamentary elections were held in November 2010 and saw independent pro-government candidates win the vast majority of seats. Source: World Factbook  

Jordan: Communications, Media and Internet

Jordan: Economy, Business, Labor, Banking, Industry and Trade

Jordan: Environment, Climate, Geology, Energy, Mining, Animals and Natural Disasters

Jordan: Equality, Civil Rights and Human Rights

Jordan: Government, Elections and Politics

Jordan: Health, Disability, Safety, Nutrition and Fitness

Jordan: History, Anthropology, Archaeology and Geography

Jordan: International Relations, Diplomacy and Foreign Assistance

Jordan: Military, Defense, Security, Intelligence, Terrorism and Peace

Jordan: Population, Census, Immigration, Refugees and Migration

Jordan: Transportation and Infrastructure

Murder of the Jordanian Fighter Pilot Lt. Moaz al-Kassasbeh, February 3, 2015 (U.S. Department of Defense)

Statement by the President on the Death of First Lieutenant Moaz al-Kasasbeh, February 3, 2015 (White House)

Today, we join the people of Jordan in grieving the loss of one of their own, First Lieutenant Moaz al-Kasasbeh, cruelly and brutally killed by ISIL terrorists.  On behalf of the American people, I offer my deepest condolences to Lieutenant al-Kasasbeh’s family and loved ones, to the brave men and women of the Jordan Armed Forces, and to King Abdullah II and the people of Jordan.

Lieutenant al-Kasasbeh will forever personify the bravery of a true son of Jordan, one who honored his family and country by his seven years of military service.  Along with his compatriots and other Arab and international members of the coalition, Lieutenant al-Kasasbeh was in the vanguard of the effort to degrade and defeat the threat posed by ISIL. 

Lieutenant al-Kasasbeh’s dedication, courage, and service to his country and family represent universal human values that stand in opposition to the cowardice and depravity of ISIL, which has been so broadly rejected around the globe.  As we grieve together, we must stand united, respectful of his sacrifice to defeat this scourge.  Today, the coalition fights for everyone who has suffered from ISIL’s inhumanity.  It is their memory that invests us and our coalition partners with the undeterred resolve to see ISIL and its hateful ideology banished to the recesses of history.