Netanyahu and Abdullah meet in Jordan, signaling they want to move past tensions

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited Jordan on Tuesday for the first time in over four years and met with King Abdullah II, the prime minister’s office said after the end of the visit.

The two leaders discussed “strategy, security and economic cooperation” at the meeting, according to a statement. They also talked about the importance of alliances between the two countries.

The visit appears to indicate both sides are interested in avoiding the public strife that marked their relationship when Netanyahu last took office.

Netanyahu’s visit to Amman secret journey In 2018, as the Donald Trump administration tried to broker a peace deal between Israel and Palestine.

Jordanian reading aloud concentration “On the need to respect the historical and legal status quo of the Blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif and not to undermine it.”

The warning came a few weeks after National Security Minister Itamar Ben Guvir first visited the Temple Mount during his tenure, and was met with outrage from the Arab world. Jordan summoned the Israeli ambassador to dress down.

Ahead of Ben Gubir’s visit, Amman had suggested that the minister’s visit or any move to violate the status quo would have far-reaching consequences, including a possible diplomatic downgrade.

Jewish worshipers visit the Temple Mount of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem on Tuesday, January 3, 2023. Known to Muslims as a noble sanctuary. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)

During his meeting with Netanyahu, Abdullah also emphasized his support for a two-state solution that would guarantee a Palestinian state in the 1967 line with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Abdullah was joined by Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, Chief of the General Staff Jafar Hassan and Intelligence Director Ahmed Hosni.

Neighbors who fought each other in a major war signed a peace treaty in 1994 while maintaining secret contacts.

This surprise meeting is remarkable in light of the complicated history between the two leaders.

Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi delivered a panel discussion at the Doha Forum in the Qatar capital on March 26, 2022. (Ammar Abd Rabbo/MOFA/Doha Forum/AFP)

During Netanyahu’s final term in office from 2009 to 2021, relations between Jerusalem and Amman deteriorated significantly, and in 2019 Abdullah announced after a series of incidents that prompted Jordan to recall its ambassador to Israel. He said the relationship was “an all-time low.”

Observers fully expected Israeli-Jordan relations to sour after the cessation of frosty ties during the Naftali Bennett Yair Rapid administration.The Joe Biden administration prioritized relations with Jordan ties between Netanyahu and Netanyahu will be complicated, making it more difficult to expand the Abraham Accords and potentially causing real unrest in Jerusalem.

Jordan was already nervous about changes to the Temple Mount during Netanyahu’s previous term. His 2020 clandestine visit to Saudi Arabia, in Amman, revealed that friendly ties between Jerusalem and Riyadh would not allow Israel to play a major Muslim role on the ground, possibly with U.S. backing. It raised concerns that it could be transferred from Jordanians to Saudis.

A year ago in 2019, Abdullah said he was under pressure to change his country’s historical role on the Temple Mount, but said he would not change his position.

Jordan’s Hashemite monarchy has played a unique role in the Holy Land since 1924.

Jordan’s Ambassador Ghassan Majari (left) argues with an Israeli police officer on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on January 17, 2023. (Screenshot: Twitter, used pursuant to Section 27a of the Copyright Act)

Israel captured the Temple Mount and the Old City of Jerusalem from Jordan in the Six Day War of 1967, nearly 20 years after Amman’s conquest of the Temple Mount in the 1948 War of Independence.

Joshua Krasna, a Middle East expert at the Foreign Policy Institute, called Jordan’s role on the Temple Mount the “keystone” to Hashemite legitimacy.

After another recent altercation at Temple Mount — Jordan’s ambassador to Israel was briefly delayed by police while visiting site — Amman Indicated Willingness to overcome stress.

An accusatory letter handed to Israeli ambassador Eitan Surkis by Jordan’s foreign ministry showed measured and willingness to move on, Israeli officials said.

“Jordan expressed its anger in the most diplomatic way allowed,” said Amman-based journalist and commentator Osama Al-Sharif. There is also.”

Lapid, Netanyahu’s predecessor, met Abdullah in Jordan and at the United Nations. Bennett also met with the King of Jordan in Amman.

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