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Sunday, April 18, 2021

Jordan’s King Says Prince Is ‘Under His Protection’ After Alleged Coup Plot; Bans Media Coverage

Jordan’s King Abdullah II said Wednesday that his half-brother Prince Hamzah, allegedly involved in a palace plot, was “under my protection” with his family.

“Hamzah is now with his family in his palace under my protection,” Abdullah said in an address read out in his name on state television.

“He has committed before the (Hashemite) family to follow the path of his parents and grandparents, to be faithful to their message, and to place the interest of Jordan, its constitution and its laws above all other considerations.”

Jordan ordered on Tuesday a ban on all media reporting on the investigation into the alleged coup attempt in the country thwarted over the weekend.

The kingdom’s State Prosecutor Hassan Al-Abdallat justified the gag order by pointing at the need to keep “the security services’ investigation into Prince Hamzah and the others secret.”

The order includes “all audiovisual media and social networks,” with social media discussions on the matter also apparently banned.

The move comes after activists leaked a recording of a conversation between Prince Hamzah bin Hussein, said to be implicated in the purported effort to overthrow his half-brother King Abdullah II, and Jordanian Chief of Staff Gen. Yousef Huneiti.

The recording appears to capture their meeting last Saturday when the general arrived at the prince’s house to inform him that he was being placed under house arrest — something Jordan’s military denied.

On the tape, as cited by the Associated Press, the general can be heard saying that the measures were being introduced to effectively punish the prince for speaking to people who “started talking more than they should.”

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