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Monday, 14 June 2021

Jordan makes new US defence agreement public

The agreement, published on Jordanian news site Ammon, stipulates that 'US forces may possess weapons and circulate with them on Jordanian territory while exercising their duties'

AFP , Sunday 21 Mar 2021
Ayman Safadi
Jordan's Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi REUTERS
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Jordan on Sunday made public a defence agreement with the United States that allows free entry of US forces, aircraft and vehicles onto the kingdom's territory.

Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi told parliament that the defence accord was "the fruit of long negotiations".

The agreement was signed in January and the government approved it last month, but in an exceptional move it bypassed parliament. The royal decree was published in the official journal this week.

The terms of the agreement, published on Jordanian news site Ammon, stipulate that "US forces may possess weapons and circulate with them on Jordanian territory while exercising their duties".

It also states that US forces may transport and stock equipment and that personnel, their aircraft and ships are authorised to "freely enter and exit Jordanian territory".

Safadi said the agreement "in no way affects Jordan's sovereignty, and everything it contains is subject to Jordanian law and is compatible with international law".

"The agreement does not authorise American forces to carry out combat actions within the kingdom," he told lawmakers.

"The agreement aims to frame defence cooperation and reinforce US support for defence programs and the kingdom's security and stability through military training and equipment," Safadi said.

The US State Department considers the Hashemite kingdom "a vital US partner on a wide range of regional security issues".

Jordan is a key recipient of American financial aid -- including $425 million in military assistance annually, according to Safadi.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online. 

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